(a)In general. Each return required under the regulations in this part, together with any prescribed copies or supporting data, shall be filled in and disposed of in accordance with the forms, instructions, and regulations applicable thereto. The return shall be carefully prepared so as fully and accurately to set forth the data required to be furnished therein. Returns which have not been so prepared will not be accepted as meeting the requirements of the regulations in this part. The return may be made by an agent in the name of the person required to make the return if an acceptable power of attorney is filed with the internal revenue office with which such person is required to file his returns and if such return includes all taxes required to be reported by such person on such return for the period covered by the return. Only one return on any one prescribed form for a return period shall be filed by or for a taxpayer. Any supplemental return made on such form in accordance with § 31.6205-1 shall constitute a part of the return which it supplements. Except as may be provided under procedures authorized by the Commissioner with respect ot taxes imposed by the Railroad Retirement Tax Act, consolidated returns of two or more employers are not permitted, as for example, returns of a parent and a subsidiary corporation. For provisions relating to the filing of returns of the taxes imposed by the Federal Insurance Contributions Act and of income tax withheld under section 3402 in the case of governmental employers see §§ 31.3122 and 31.3404-1.
(b)Use of prescribed forms—
(1)In general. Copies of the prescribed return forms will so far as possible be regularly furnished taxpayers by the Internal Revenue Service. A taxpayer will not be excused from making a return, however, by the fact that no return form has been furnished to him. Taxpayers not supplied with the proper forms should make application therefor to an internal revenue office in ample time to have their returns prepared, verified, and filed on or before the due date with the internal revenue office with which they are required to file their returns. See §§ 31.6071 (a)-1 and 31.6091-1, relating, respectively, to the time and place for filing returns. In the absence of a prescribed return form, a statement made by a taxpayer disclosing the aggregate amount of wages or compensation reportable on such form for the period in respect of which a return is required and the amount of taxes due may be accepted as a tentative return. If filed within the prescribed time, the statement so made will relieve the taxpayer from liability for the addition to tax imposed for the delinquent filing of the return, provided that without unnecessary delay such tentative return is supplemented by a return made on the proper form. For additions to the tax in case of failure to file a return within the prescribed time, see the provisions of § 301.6651-1 of this chapter (Regulations on Procedure and Administration).
In any case where the use of Form W-2 is required from the purpose of making a return or reporting information, such requirement may be satisfied by submitting the information required by such form on magnetic tape or by other media, provided that the prior consent of the Commissioner of Social Security (or other authorized officer or employee thereof has been obtained.
(c)Signing and verification. For provisions relating to the signing of returns, see § 31.6061-1. For provisions relating to the verifying of returns, see § 31.6065(a)-1.
(d)Reporting of identifying numbers. For provisions relating to the reporting of identifying number on returns required under the regulations in this part, see § 31.6109-1.