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How to resolve a Duplicate SSN error in ProSeries

SOLVEDby IntuitProSeries Basic54Updated January 24, 2022

The ProSeries EF Center only allows a Social Security Number (SSN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN) to be assigned to a single client file.  If more than one client file is marked for electronic filing and shares the same SSN or EIN, a Return Duplicate SSN/EIN will be reported in the EF Status column.

Common causes for a Return Duplicate SSN/EIN status include, but aren't limited to:

  • Using Save As to create a copy of a client's return, while that client is marked for electronic filing. This creates two e-file returns for the same client.
  • Multiple copies of a single client file stored in different folders on the computer or network. This is typically associated with moving client files between computers or opening the files from removable media.
  • Using the Split MFJ Return feature when the original return is marked for electronic filing. The taxpayer's split return will also be marked for e-file, creating a Duplicate SSN/EIN condition.
  • Making a copy of a return to file an amended return.

Resolving duplicate SSN in ProSeries Professional 2020 and newer:

  • ProSeries 2020 and newer won't require a Duplicate SSN record to be removed from the EF Center HomeBase to e-file. Instead, the software will allow duplicate records to coexist in the same HomeBase.
    • It's advisable to make sure your EF Center HomeBase doesn't contain duplicate SSNs, so we recommend unmarking it for e-file (from the Federal Information Worksheet, Part VI) to avoid confusion and potentially e-filing the incorrect return.
  • The following window will be visible when a Duplicate SSN record is present and you try to e-file it:
    PCG_PS_DuplicateSSN.png
  • Transmitting a return with the same Social Security number as one that has already been e-filed through Intuit software will fail, and the transmission log will specify it was due to a duplicate Social Security number. An exception to this would be a state return that wasn't previously e-filed; it can be transmitted even when it's attached to a previously accepted federal return. See records 6 and 7 in the image above for an example.
 

This section applies if the HomeBase doesn't show Duplicate SSN, but when you go to e-file, the electronic filing system turns the return away.

When attempting to transmit an e-file return, the log file indicates:

"Duplicate Social Security Number - A tax return with the same Social Security number has already been submitted - in other words, it appears you're trying to efile the same return twice. If you need to change this return, you'll need to file an amended return on paper, by mail."

When returns are restored from a backed up location in ProSeries, any e-file status that was previously associated with that return is removed and the EF Status column in the EF Center is Marked for EF.

A restored return that has previously been accepted by the taxing authority is attempted to be transmitted will generate a transmission error, indicating that a tax return with the same Social Security number has already been e-filed.

DuplicateSocialSecurity.jpeg

To prevent this error from occurring, update the EF Status for each client file that has been restored into the software from a backup location using the steps in this article.

Follow these steps to determine if the return has already been transmitted to the taxing authority:

  1. Close the error message.
  2. Go to the Federal Information Worksheet.
  3. Scroll down to Part I - Personal Information.
  4. Make sure the SSN/EIN is entered correctly.
  5. If the SSN/EIN is correct, look up the ID number after logging into My Account to determine if this return has already been e-filed.
    • From the left column, select Products and choose e-File Status.
    • Fill in the required fields.
  6. If the return has already been e-filed and needs to be filed again, an amended return is required to report any changes from the original return.

When the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN condition exists, the duplicate status is typically assigned only to the second file to be created with that SSN or EIN. The duplicate return status will be retained by that client file until the issue is resolved, and that client's Homebase record is refreshed (by opening and saving the client file).

Option 1 - Resolving a Duplicate status manually:

  1. In the EF Center HomeBase, or the EF Clients tab, click the SSN/EIN column heading to sort by the SSN or EIN.
  2. Locate the return that reports Return Duplicate SSN/EIN.
  3. Either above or below the return reporting the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN statusidentify any returns that share that same SSN or EIN.
  4. Determine which return is the "good" copy and will be retained.
  5. Open the bad copy.
  6. On the Federal Information Worksheet, Part VI, unmark all electronic filing selections for the Federal and state.
  7. Open each state attached to the client and Save the return.
  8. If no duplicate return was found in Step 3, or if the duplicate return was removed and the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN status persists open the return that displays the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN status, then go to each state attached to the client that is marked for electronic filing.
  9. Save and Close the client. The HomeBase record for that client will be refreshed, upon returning to the EF Center HomeBase or EF Client's tab.

Option 2 - Resolving a Duplicate status with the Fix Duplicate SSN/EIN utility:

When a Return Duplicate SSN/EIN is reported in the EF Status column, click the Fix Duplicate SSN/EIN hyperlink located in the Next Step column.

The Fix Duplicate SSN/EIN utility will assess the issue and correct the EF Status or guide you through resolving the duplicate SSN/EIN error.

  • If ProSeries discovers that you have already corrected a duplicate SSN/EIN condition by removing the original file containing that SSN or EIN, ProSeries will refresh the client file's EF Center record and clear the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN status.
  • If ProSeries discovers that more than one client shares the same SSN or EIN, a window will open and identify all client files in the EF Center that share the SSN/EIN.  Select the client file(s) you wish to remove by checking the appropriate box. ProSeries will unmark the selected client file(s) for electronic filing to remove them from the EF Center.
  • The selected clients are not deleted and will remain available on the HomeBase.

Additional Information:

  • A client file that has already been e-filed or marked as Ready for EF can't be removed by this utility.
  • You can't remove all client files reported in the Fix Duplicate SSN/EIN window. One client file must remain unmarked.
  • If ProSeries Access Rights are enabled, you must have rights to E-File and Open returns.
  • ProSeries Basic won't require a Duplicate SSN record to be removed from the EF Clients HomeBase to e-file.  Instead, the software will let duplicate records to coexist in the same HomeBase.
    • It's advisable to make sure your EF Clients tab doesn't contain duplicate SSNs, so we recommend unmarking it for e-file (from the Federal Information Worksheet, Part VI) to avoid confusion and potentially e-filing the incorrect return.
  • When you attempt to e-file a return with a duplicate SSN you'll receive the following warning:
User-added image
  • Transmitting a return with the same social security as one that has already been e-filed will fail and the transmission log will specify it was due to a duplicate Social Security number.  An exception to this would be a State return that was not previously e-filed, it can be transmitted even when it is attached to a previously accepted Federal return. See records 6 and 7 in the image above for an example.
User-added image

For tax year 2019 and prior, the EF Status column of the EF Center of ProSeries Professional or of the EF Clients tab in ProSeries Basic shows Return Duplicate SSN/EIN when there aren't duplicates in the HomeBase. This should no longer be an issue for tax year 2020 and later.

Why is this happening?

This situation can occur if the EF Center previously contained duplicates and was resolved by removing the duplicate file, but the HomeBase record for the current client file hasn't been recalculated and updated.

Follow these steps to recalculate and update the HomeBase Record:

  1. Open ProSeries
  2. Open the client return that has the Return Duplicate SSN/EIN status.
  3. Recalculate the return by pressing the F9 key, and then save return by pressing the F10 key.
  4. Close the client return.
  5. Return to the EF Center.

Follow these steps if the issue is still occurring:

  1. Backup the client file to the Desktop.
  2. Delete the client file from the 1040 HomeBase View.
    • If on a network, also delete the client.jn1 file from the YYData folder.
      • YY represents the two-digit tax year.
  3. Run a HomeBase Tune-up again. 
  4. Restore the client file from the Desktop back into ProSeries.

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