If this is how it works, we should have a lot of freebies now.
But if you do want to do this cheaply, revert to getting F.8879 signed in wet ink and have your clients return it to you by email or fax - all without in-person contact. This, however, does not negate your responsibility to verify your clients' identity.
Still an AllStar
There are a lot of software companies who have stepped up and made part or all of their product temporarily free during this public health crisis. People are being asked to make enormous personal sacrifices right now for the collective good, there is no reason that large companies like Intuit can't do the same if they have the ability to make it even slightly easier for people to practice effective social distancing. The responsibility to verify clients' identity exists for businesses that are currently using e-signature, clearly that doesn't preclude the benefit of being able to have clients sign their returns electronically.
Some clients are not going to be comfortable sending their 8879 through email, and not everyone has the ability to fax documents from their home. Making e-signature readily available to everyone who has already purchased an Intuit product would be a small but meaningful gesture from a large company to show that they understand the hardship that many of us are experiencing.
And, if all stores had hand sanitizer dispensers and wipes readily available throughout the store we'd be in a lot better shape than we are right now.
Can the included Intuit Link get the 8879 to clients?
Here is, it seems, a similar service outside of the Intuit multiverse. This is not an endorsement I am only aware it exists via offers listed on this site.
PandaDoc has created a free eSign document signing plan during the Coronavirus outbreak.
We want to help keep businesses running and people working during this uncertain time, so we have introduced a new Free eSign plan, a free eSignature solution that we are presenting worldwide to keep business doors open and deals coming in.
Free eSign gives companies the following capabilities, for unlimited users and for free of charge:
- Unlimited document uploads – Upload and send as many documents for eSignature as you’d like.
- Unlimited eSignatures – Collect an unlimited number of safe, secure, and legally binding electronic signatures.
- Payment processing – Accept a credit card, PayPal, or ACH payment the moment your doc is signed.
Not here to defend Intuit. Looking at this objectively, a lot of these offers are only available to new customers in the hope of getting them sign up. For e-signature offerings, it's also not uncommon to impose various restrictions, that would make the product less commercially viable. It would be rare to find a company that offers existing customers unrestricted use of their paid commercial services without charge.
It doesn't seem like any of PandaDoc's plans offer KBA. If that is correct, it would mean PandaDoc can't be used for F.8879 whether or not it is free.
Still an AllStar
E-signature functionality doesn't work in Proseries. I paid for signatures and was never able to use them. I have a couple open support tickets since last year and they don't want to fix it. I've been using DocuSign instead of paper.