IRS Tax Return Rejection Code IND-031-04

When prepare and eFile your 2021 tax return, your 2020 Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is used to validate your identity and to sign your return.

Attention: Did your IRS Return get rejected by the IRS even though you did enter the correct 2020 AGI?

The number of 2021 Tax Return rejections by the IRS - not - has increased this year over previous years, even though the 2020 Adjusted Gross Income amount was entered correctly by the filing taxpayer.

Problem: The IRS has rejected your return - not - because the 2020 Adjusted Gross Income - AGI - or self selected PIN you entered as an identification method on your 2020 Tax Return does not match IRS AGI records. Another reason, why your return got rejected could be because you entered the question on whether you filed a 2019 return incorrectly.

The IRS not rejects returns, we are here to help you get this resolved.

2020 AGI Solution: Sign into your account: click File on the left side menu, and follow the on-screen prompts until you reach the screen asking you if you filed a 2020 tax return last year: select Yes or No. Then, click the green Continue button, and enter the correct 2020 AGI as listed on your 2019 Tax Return in the box on the next screen. In case you have done all this already and you still get rejected please read the following.

Step 1: DO NOT just keep submitting or re-eFiling your 2021 return over and over again with the same 2020 AGI amount expecting different results. After a certain number of attempts the IRS will or might stop accepting your return being e-Filed and/or lock your account.

Step 2: Option 1: Instead of entering your 2020 AGI dollar amount enter 0 - as the number zero - as your 2020 AGI and re-eFile. You might think entering 0 is incorrect, however correct is what the IRS has on record, even though your 2020 AGI was NOT 0 or zero.

Step 2: Option 2: Instead of entering your 2020 AGI dollar amount or 0 as your 2020 AGI,  indicate that you DID NOT file a 2020 return by answering NO when asked if you filed a 2020 return or not.

  • Keep in mind, the Step 2 options as mentioned above, are simply a reflection on what the IRS might have stored in their system at this point in time. They might not be an actual reflection whether you did or did not file a 2019 return. The 2019 AGI is used as an identification method when e-Filing your 2020 return, thus you are identifying yourself with what the IRS system has on file at this point in time.

Here are three ways to locate your 2020 Adjusted Gross Income, AGI: 

1) If you e-Filed your 2020 Tax Return on, sign into your account and View and/or download your PDF tax return file from the My Account page. Find your prior-year AGI on Line 11 of your 2020 Form 1040. 

2) If you filed elsewhere and you do have a copy of your 2020 Tax Return, identify the exact form and line number for your AGI: 

    On Line 11 of IRS Form 1040, 1040-SR or 1040-NR.

If you cannot locate your prior-year AGI or your return keeps getting rejected over and over by the IRS for any reason or even if you are 100% certain the AGI entered is correct:

Create a free IRS account and obtain a 2020 tax transcript.

Compare what the IRS has on file with what you have.

In 2021 the IRS announced that a Identify Protection Personal Identification Number or IP-PIN serves as an alternative to your prior your AGI. Instructions on how to obtain the IP-PIN.

Attention: If you mail in your 2021 return be prepared that it might be a very long time until it's being processed due to a backlog of paper return processing. Thus, make sure you exhaust first all of the above options to be able to e-File your return.

If your mailing in is your only option, lease PRINT your return(s) from My Account, sign them, and MAIL it to the IRS and/or state tax agency as the AGI is not required for verification on paper returns. Attach copies of your W-2, 1099 etc. with you return. Do NOT mail your state return to the IRS but to the respective state agency.

Make sure to get it postmarked before April 15. Find the correct mailing address to use at Contact us with questions:

Next year, your AGI will be stored conveniently for you in your account under My Account

1) Source: Feb. 20, 2021 Ways and Means Committee Report.