Administrative

A. Massachusetts Department of Revenue E-File for Corporations, Partnerships and Fiduciaries

Q1. What is the corporate, partnership and fiduciary e-file program?

Q2. What are the benefits of e-file?

Q3. Are there corporations that cannot file their tax returns electronically?

Q4. Can a corporation e-file a 52-53 week, short period or final return?

Q5. Can I electronically file my federal corporate, partnership or fiduciary income tax return?

Q6. Now that I know my options on how to e-file my corporate, partnership and fiduciary returns, what options do I have available to make the electronic payments?

B. Corporations and Partnerships Required to E-File

Q1. Which corporations and partnerships are required to file returns electronically (the mandate to electronically file fiduciary returns has been postponed)?

Q2. Does the income threshold set forth in TIR 04-30 for corporations electing to file a combined return apply to each corporate entity or does it apply to the total, combined income?

Q3. What actions should a corporation, partnership or fiduciary take to ensure they are ready for filing an income tax return electronically?

Q4. What happens if a corporate or partnership taxpayer required to e-file fails to comply? What if a fiduciary taxpayer required to e-pay fails to comply? What if an e-filed return is received late?

Q5. If the corporation or partnership is required to file their returns electronically, are they also required to e-file their extension?

Q6. If the fiduciary is required to make payments electronically, are they also required to file and pay the extension electronically?

C. Communication and General E-File Instructions

Q1. If a corporation, partnership or fiduciary prepares its own return, what extra steps are required in order to comply with the requirements to file an electronic return?

Q2. Are federal forms and/or attachments allowed to be included in the electronically filed return?

Q3. What is the first period of filing that would be required to be filed electronically for corporate and partnership returns and extensions?

Q4. Under the e-file mandate are software vendors required to support every Massachusetts corporate and partnership form and schedule?

Q5. If a vendor makes a business decision to not support certain forms then decides to support them later in the year, will they be able to request DOR approval for these additional forms?

Q6. Is there any waiver application process for corporations or partnerships to exempt them from the e-file mandate?

Q7. Will the Department establish any down time during the year for the acceptance of electronically filed returns?

Q8. What is the penalty for taxpayer non-compliance with the corporate e-file mandate?

Q9. How does Massachusetts determine if a return has been timely filed?

Q10. What would be required for proof of attempt to electronically file prior to due date?

Q11. What is the turnaround deadline for tax practitioners and/or taxpayers to correct and resubmit a rejected Massachusetts return?

Q12. How are payments made?

Q13. Will a taxpayer be able to choose a partial payment with the return and pay the balance by some other means?

Q14. Prior to the return being due, will a taxpayer be able to select any date up the due date of the return to file a payment?

Q15. What does DOR expect to see in the attribute 'documentCount' that exists in the message set? The schema describes it as 'the number of return documents in the return.' What exactly does that mean?

Q16. May taxpayers act as self-transmitters and/or develop their own software?

Q17. Is Form 8633 Application for Electronic Filing still required?

Q18. What are the requirements for EROs and transmitters/software developers?

Q19. Are the IRS EFIN and ETIN used?

Q20. Which Massachusetts corporate returns, forms and schedules can be filed electronically?

Q21. For electronically accepted corporate forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item?

Q22. What return conditions/types are excluded from corporate 2005 E-filing?

Q23. Which MA fiduciary returns, forms and schedules are accepted electronically by Massachusetts?

Q24. For electronically accepted fiduciary forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item?

Q25. What return conditions/types are excluded from 2005 fiduciary E-filing?

Q26. Which MA partnership returns, forms and schedules are accepted electronically by Massachusetts?

Q27. For electronically accepted partnership forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item?

Q28. What return conditions/types are excluded from 2004 partnership e-filing?

Q29. How long will MA continue to accept Massachusetts corporate, partnership and fiduciary returns for a given tax year? Is only one tax year at a time supported? Or, multiple tax years?

Q30. Does Massachusetts only support the paper M-8453C, M-8453P and M-8453F e-file signature method?

Q31. Does the MA corporate return e-file system support the attachment of supplemental files (.PDF, Excel, Word, etc.)?

Q32. The tax practitioner and taxpayer need to sign the electronic return to show the taxpayer authorized it to be completed and transmitted by the tax practitioner. Since the DOR does not use electronic signatures, how do I authorize the filing and transmission of my return?

Q33. DOR does not review tax preparation software used strictly for preparing paper tax returns so why does DOR review and approve all tax preparation software used for preparing electronic returns?

Q34. What precautions have DOR taken to ensure tax return data is secure during transmission to DOR?

Q35. How will the taxpayer know DOR received and processed my electronic tax return?

Q36. Does DOR follow the IRS in the filing of a consolidated corporation return?

Q37. How can I file a B extension for corporate excise?

D. E-File for Corporations, Partnerships and Fiduciaries That Use a Tax Professional to Prepare Their Tax Return

Q1. If a corporation, partnership or fiduciary uses a tax professional to prepare the tax return, what extra steps are required in order to comply with the requirements to file an electronic return?

Technical

Q1. Will Massachusetts use DCN for tracking as they do in Individual?

Q2. How does Massachusetts determine "timely filing" submittal?

Q3. Will the mandated extensions return only accept/reject, or will they return both accept/reject and approved/not approved?

Q4. Will Massachusetts validate all returns against the last release version?

Q5. How will the software vendors be notified that they have passed testing?

Q6. What is the process for transmission acknowledgment?

Q7. What is the limit of number of occurrences for a specific form or schedule?

Q8. How do other transmission software transmit to Massachusetts autonomously?

Q9. Can any filename and extension be used or is there a preferred naming convention?

Q10. Do SSH keys have an inherent expiration. Do you change them periodically?

Q11. Will XML ACKS be wrapped up in MIME and/or SOAP headers?

Q12. Will the use of SCP to move files back and forth be used? Will transmitters also be able to run shell commands under SSH?

Q13. Will Massachusetts compress ACKS?

Q14. What does DOR expect to see in the attribute 'documentId'?

Q15. What does DOR expect to see in the attribute 'documentCount' that exists in the message set? The schema describes it as 'the number of return documents in the return.' What exactly does that mean?

Q16. Is it the intention of Massachusetts to stay in sync with the Federal 1120 electronic filing initiatives (MeF) with respect to binary attachments and the use of g-zip?

Q17. Will Massachusetts indicate form copy number in your reject xpath for a reject that applies to a specific copy of a multiple copy form?

Q18. Will an ack batch file have the same file name as its corresponding return batch or will it have a different extension?

Q19. Will there be one directory in which return files are placed, and another directory from which we get ack files?

Q20. Does the document count include the header? What other forms should be included?

Q21. DocID - More than one occurrence cannot have the same ID, what is wanted in the attribute?

Q22. Do extension and regular returns need to have different file extensions?


Administrative

A. Massachusetts Department of Revenue e-File for Corporations, Partnerships and Fiduciaries

Q1. What is Corporate, Partnership and Fiduciary e-file Program?

A1.
This is the name for the electronic filing of Massachusetts corporate, partnership and fiduciary tax returns. When a corporation, partnership or fiduciary e-files they send their tax return data to Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR) electronically instead of on paper forms. In 2005 (TY 2004) DOR created a new e-file system for corporations, partnerships and fiduciaries through the purchase of third party software, which uses the widely accepted XML format, a standardized way of identifying, storing and transmitting data.
Certain corporations and partnerships are required to e-file and e-pay, and certain fiduciaries are required to e-pay as explained in these FAQs and TIR 04-30.

Q2. What are the benefits of e-file?

A2. E-file results in benefits for both DOR, tax practitioners and taxpayers, including:

  • Explicit Business Rules: New business rule explanations pinpoint the location of the error in the return and provide complete information in the Acknowledgement File.
  • Fast acknowledgements: In most cases, transmissions are processed upon receipt and acknowledgments are created and ready to be retrieved by the transmitter.
  • Electronic payments. You can e-file a balance due return and, at the same time, authorize an electronic funds withdrawal from you bank account.

Q3. Are there corporations that cannot file their tax returns electronically?

A3. The DOR e-file program does not allow form 355-SBC to be filed electronically; it must be filed on paper.

Q4. Can a corporation e-file a 52-53 week, short period or final return?

A4. Yes. DOR will electronically accept 52-53 week, short period and final returns.

Q5. Can I electronically file my federal corporate, partnership or fiduciary income tax return?

A5. IRS does have an e-file program in place. Please visit the IRS website for more information.

Q6. Now that I know my options on how to e-file my corporate, partnership and fiduciary returns, what options do I have available to make the electronic payments?

A6.
The payment due with the corporate or fiduciary return can be made with the third party software (make sure your software provider allows for the electronic payment in their software), or online. Fiduciary return balance due payments and extensions and their accompanying payment can be made via DOR's WebFile for Income application.

Corporate return balance due payments, extensions and their accompanying payment, and estimated tax payments can be made through the registered taxpayer's account. If the taxpayer has not registered for WebFile for Business, he/she must go to this site to register via electronic TA-1 application in order to use WebFile for Business to make electronic payments. If the taxpayer chooses not to register with WebFile for Business, the taxpayer must include the electronic payment in the return or extension filed through third party software.

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B. Corporations and Partnerships Required to E-File

Q1. Which corporations and partnerships are required to file returns electronically (the mandate to electronically file fiduciary returns has been postponed)?

A1.
DOR requires that corporations and partnerships for tax periods ending on or after December 31, 2004, file and pay electronically if they meet certain income thresholds. Please see TIR 04-30 for more information.

Q2. Does the income threshold set forth in TIR 04-30 for corporations electing to file a combined return apply to each corporate entity or does it apply to the total, combined income?

A2.
The income threshold applies to the total, combined income.

Q3. What actions should a corporation, partnership or fiduciary take to ensure they are ready for filing an income tax return electronically?

A3.
That depends on whether the corporation, partnership or fiduciary will use a tax professional who uses third party approved software to prepare their electronic tax return or if the corporation plans to prepare their own electronic tax return. Taxpayers that plan to use a tax professional to prepare their electronic income tax return through third party software should check with them early and ensure they are approved by DOR and that the software they are using contains all forms and schedules necessary for a complete return. Corporations, partnerships and fiduciaries that prefer to prepare their own return should select a software product that supports all the necessary forms and schedules to file a complete and accurate return.

Q4. What happens if a corporate or partnership taxpayer required to e-file fails to comply? What if a fiduciary taxpayer required to e-pay fails to comply? What if an e-filed return is received late?

A4.
If a corporate or partnerships taxpayer fails to file a tax return electronically that is mandated to do so in TIR 04-30, this statute permits the Commissioner to impose a penalty of up to $100 "for each improper return, document or data transmission, and for each improper payment." Returns that are e-filed and /or paid late are subject to the same late file/late pay penalties and interest assessed on paper returns. Please see MGL Chapter 62C, Section 33.

Q5. If the corporation or partnership is required to file their returns electronically, are they also required to e-file their extension?

A5. Yes, if the corporation or partnership meets the criteria outlined in TIR 04-30, the corporate extension must be filed and paid electronically, and the partnership extension must be filed electronically. However, if the corporation does not meet the income threshold outlined in TIR 04-30 but the payment due with the extension is equal to $5,000 or more, the extension and accompanying payment must be filed and paid electronically. See section II B of TIR 04-30.

Q6. If the fiduciary is required to make payments electronically, are they also required to file and pay the extension electronically?

A6. If the fiduciary meets the criteria outlined in TIR 04-30, the fiduciary must make the extension payment electronically, but the extension form may be filed on paper. In order to make extension payments as well as any other type of payment electronically for fiduciaries, please use DOR's the WebFile for Income application.

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C. Communication and General E-File Instructions

Q1. If a corporation, partnership or fiduciary prepares its own return, what extra steps are required in order to comply with the requirements to file an electronic return?


A1.
In order for corporations, partnerships and fiduciaries to file accurate and complete returns, taxpayers that choose to file their own return should first determine what forms and schedules the software supports before purchasing.

Q2. Are federal forms and/or attachments allowed to be included in the electronically filed return?

A2.
No. Only Massachusetts Department of Revenue official forms are allowed to be filed electronically.

Q3. What is the first period of filing that would be required to be filed electronically for corporate and partnership returns and extensions? (i.e., are fiscal years ending 10/04 and 11/04 required to be filed electronically or will the mandate require only year ending 12/04 and thereafter?).


A3.
Tax year ending 12/31/2004 and thereafter.


Q4. Under the e-file mandate are software vendors required to support every Massachusetts corporate and partnership form and schedule?

A4. A software vendor is not required to support every Massachusetts corporate/partnership form and schedule. However, this does not exempt corporations and partnerships from meeting the e-file obligation. Under the e-file mandated all corporations and partnerships that have met certain thresholds are required to file all forms and schedules electronically whether or not your software supports them.

Q5. If a vendor makes a business decision to not support certain forms then decides to support them later in the year, will they be able to request DOR approval for these additional forms?

A5.
Yes

Q6. Is there any waiver application process for corporations or partnerships to exempt them from the e-file mandate?

A6.
No. All corporations and partnerships that meet the e-file requirements must file and pay electronically.

Q7. Will DOR establish any down time during the year for the acceptance of electronically filed returns?

A7.
DOR will not cease operations of the e-file program at all.

Q8. What is the penalty for taxpayer non-compliance with the corporate Efile mandate?

A8. Please refer to TIR 04-30, Section F.

Q9. How does Massachusetts determine if a return has been timely filed?

A9.
The return is considered timely filed if it is received by midnight on the due date.

Q10. What would be required for proof of attempt to electronically file prior to due date?

A10.
Unless the failure to file and/or pay electronically is due to breakdown of the systems or equipment at the Massachusetts Department of Revenue, or other circumstances under which the Commissioner may exercise discretion to waive penalties, such as a copy of the log showing that a transmission was sent prior to the due date, the Department may assess late file and/or late payment penalties and interest.

Q11. What is the turnaround deadline for tax practitioners and/or taxpayers to correct and resubmit a rejected Massachusetts return?

A11.
In order for the return to be considered timely, the resubmitted return must be received by the later of the due date of the return or five business days after the date DOR gives notification the return was originally rejected.

Q12. How are payments made?

A12.
Corporate return payments and extensions with payments can be made through the third party software (ACH debit). These as well as estimated payments can be made through our application (ACH debit). Estimated payments may also be made via ACH credit. Fiduciary return payments and extensions with payments can be made through third party software. These and estimated payments can also be paid via WebFile for Income .

Q13. Will a taxpayer be able to choose a partial payment with the return and pay the balance by some other means?

A13.
A taxpayer will be able to make a partial Electronic Funds Withdrawal (ACH debit) payment; any remaining payment due must also be paid electronically. In addition a taxpayer may make a payment using the application.

Q14. Prior to the return being due, will a taxpayer be able to select any date up the due date of the return to file a payment?

A14.
No. Only payments made on extensions will have the option to warehouse.

Q15. If the taxpayer is e-filing after the due date and they choose to pay by Electronic Funds Withdrawal (ACH debit) will they need to select the day of acceptance?

A15.
No. Warehousing the payment on the return is not an option.

Q16. May taxpayers act as self-transmitters and/or develop their own software?

A16.
Taxpayers requesting the development of their own software and/or act as self-transmitters will be considered on a case-by-base basis.

Q17. Is Form 8633 Application for Electronic Filing still required?

A17.
No. This form requirement has been omitted from the Electronic Filing program.

Q18. What are the requirements for EROs and transmitters/software developers?

A18.
IRS approved EROs will no longer need to separately apply with Massachusetts. Transmitters/software developers must first follow the registration procedures outline in the Software Vendors' Guide and then successfully pass testing.

Q19. Are the IRS EFIN and ETIN used?

A19.
Massachusetts will use the Federal EFIN and ETIN.

Q20. Which Massachusetts corporate returns, forms and schedules can be filed electronically?

A20.
All Massachusetts corporate returns, forms and schedules, with the exception of Form 355SBC, and Form 355Q will be accepted electronically.

Q21. For electronically accepted corporate forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item? (Example: any limit on the number of 3K-1s, numbers of entities included in a combined/consolidated return, etc.?)

A21.
It is the same for paper filers.

Q22. What return conditions/types are excluded from corporate 2005 e-filing?

A22.
All conditions (consolidated, first, final, amended, fiscal, short, 52-53 week) are accepted, except for tax years ending prior to 12/31/04.

Q23. Which MA fiduciary returns, forms and schedules are accepted electronically by Massachusetts?

A23.
For tax years 12/31/04 and 2004 fiscal years, all but Form 20, Form 20A and Schedule DI-S will be supported. For tax years 12/31/05 and fiscal 2005 years, all but Form 20, form 20A and Schedule D-IS will be supported (Form 20 and 20A are now obsolete due to the recent change in fiduciary law).

Q24. For electronically accepted fiduciary forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item? (Example: any limit on the number of K-1s, numbers of entities included in a combined/consolidated return, etc.)?

A24.
It is the same for paper filers.

Q25. What return conditions/types are excluded from 2005 fiduciary e-filing:

A25.
All conditions (consolidated, first, final, amended, fiscal, short, 52-53 week) are accepted, except for tax years ending prior to 12/31/04.

Q26. Which MA partnership returns, forms and schedules are accepted electronically by Massachusetts?

A26.
All partnership returns, forms and schedules are accepted electronically.

Q27. For electronically accepted partnership forms, are there any system limitations on the number of schedules, forms, or items of detail for a given form/schedule or income/loss item? (Example: any limit on the number of K-1s, numbers of entities included in a combined/consolidated return, etc.?)

A27.
It is the same for paper filers.

Q28. What return conditions/types are excluded from 2004 partnership e-filing?

A28.
All conditions (consolidated, first, final, amended, fiscal, short, 52-53 week) are accepted, except for tax years ending prior to 12/31/04).

Q29. How long will MA continue to accept Massachusetts corporate, partnership and fiduciary returns for a given tax year? Is only one tax year at a time supported? Or, multiple tax years?

A29.
Currently DOR will be accepting prior year returns ending 12/31/04 and forward. However, multiple years cannot be commingled in the same file.

Q30. Does Massachusetts only support the paper M-8453C, M-8453P and M-8453F e-file signature method?

A30.
Yes. The M-8453C, M-8453P and M-8453F signature documents must be retained at the ERO's place of business for a minimum of three years. They should not be sent to DOR.

Q31. Does the MA corporate return e-file system support the attachment of supplemental files (.PDF, Excel, Word, etc.)?

A31.
No only official DOR approved forms and schedules will be accepted. However, DOR has added free-form narratives to the schema for certain line items in several forms and schedules.

Q32. The tax practitioner and taxpayer need to sign the electronic return to show the taxpayer authorized it to be completed and transmitted by the tax practitioner. Since DOR does not use electronic signatures, how do I authorize the filing and transmission of my return?

A32.
Forms M-8453C (corporate), M-8453P (partnership) and M-8453F (fiduciary) must be completed and signed by both tax practitioner and taxpayer and kept at the tax practitioner's place of business for a minimum of three years. Do not send these forms to DOR.

Q33. DOR does not review tax preparation software used strictly for preparing paper tax returns so why does DOR review and approve all tax preparation software used for preparing electronic returns?

A33.
DOR established a rigorous approval process that tax preparation software used for preparing electronic returns must pass before software vendors are allowed to market their products as "approved for e-file." This process ensures that software approved for electronic filing can accurately format tax return data (forms and schedules) into XML format and transmit accurate returns data to DOR.

Q34. What precautions have DOR taken to ensure tax return data is secure during transmission to DOR?

A34.
The Massachusetts Department of Revenue is bound by law to protect the confidentiality of tax return information and meeting that responsibility takes the highest priority at the agency. All Information transmitted through DOR e-file is secured through use of multiple security mechanisms and personnel, operating under strict guidelines, which carefully protect the information. DOR e-file systems employ a variety of security features, which are closely monitored to prevent unauthorized or inappropriate access.

Q35. How will the taxpayer know DOR received and processed my electronic tax return?

A35.
DOR will create the acknowledgment file of the accepted or rejected return(s) and it is the responsibility of the transmitter to retrieve it and make the file available for the tax practitioner or taxpayer.

Q36. Does DOR follow the IRS in the filing of a consolidated corporation return?

A36.
No. Massachusetts consolidated filing does not follow the IRS model. Each 355C return must be filed separately containing all the necessary forms and schedules for each taxable entity.

Q37. How can I file a B extension for corporate excise?

A37.
The B extension must be filed and paid through the taxpayer's WebFile for Business Account. B extensions are not supported through third party commercial software.

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D. E-File for Corporations, Partnerships and Fiduciaries That Use a Tax Professional to Prepare Their Tax Return

Q1. If a corporation, partnership or fiduciary uses a tax professional to prepare the tax return, what extra steps are required in order to comply with the requirements to file an electronic return?

A1.
If your corporation, partnership or fiduciary uses a tax professional to prepare the entire tax return, you should check for the following: check with your tax professional to ensure that the software they are using is approved for electronic filing for Massachusetts tax forms and schedules. You should also check with your tax professional to make sure their software supports all the necessary forms and schedules required to file your return accurately and completely.

Technical

Q1. Will Massachusetts use DCN for tracking as they do in Individual?

A1.
DOR has created a field for the DCN, which will be 14 characters long. DOR will not use this field; it is provided for use by the software vendors and/or EROs.

Q2. How does Massachusetts determine "timely filing" submittal?

A2.
Massachusetts will use the timestamp of the file when it gets here. The return is considered timely filed if the file timestamp is equal to or less than midnight on the due date.

Q3. Will the mandated extensions return only accept/reject, or will they return both accept/reject and approved/not approved? We need to determine if the extension ACKS return a simple accepted, or an "extension approved" result.

A3.
The extension ACKS will return a simple "accepted" if received on or before the original due date. The validity of the accepted extension is still subject to the Administrative Provisions outlined in Chapter 62C Section 19. If the extension is received after the due date, the extension will reject.

Q4. Will Massachusetts validate all returns against the last release version?

A4.
Yes. Each schema released will be assigned a version number.

Q5. How will the software vendors be notified that they have passed testing?

A5.
Via e-mail.

Q6. What is the process for transmission acknowledgment?

A6.
The XML acknowledgement format from the IRS Form 1120 will be used.

Q7. What is the limit of number of occurrences for a specific form or schedule?

A7.
Limits are defined in the schema as attributes on the element or complex type. This would be in the XML schema, or the description of business rules for validating the returns, depending on which form or schedule you are referring to.

Q8. How do other transmission software transmit to Massachusetts autonomously?

A8.
Autonomously (unattended) can be done through SSH. DOR will be using private keys for the return transmission, and not usernames/passwords, therefore your SSH client has to be configured properly.

Q9. Can any filename and extension be used or is there a preferred naming convention?

A9.
DOR requires the following scheme:
MA355<EIN number><year><month><day><hour><minute><second>.txt would be:
MA35599999999920040731160000.txt

Q10. Do SSH keys have an inherent expiration. Do you change them periodically?

A10.
No.

Q11. Will XML ACKS be wrapped up in MIME and/or SOAP headers?

A11.
No. There's no need for SOAP/MIME on outgoing ACKS.

Q12. Will the use of SCP to move files back and forth be used? Will transmitters also be able to run shell commands under SSH?

A12.
For security purposes shell commands are not available on our SSH machines.

Q13. Will Massachusetts compress ACKS?

A13.
Massachusetts will not be compressing ACKS.

Q14. What does DOR expect to see in the attribute 'documentId'?

A14.
A "documentId" is a way to give every document instance a unique name so that it can be referenced in some way. It is a required field and it must be unique.

Q15. What does DOR expect to see in the attribute 'documentCount' that exists in the <ReturnData> message set? The schema describes it as 'the number of return documents in the return.' What exactly does that mean?

A15.
This is a convention. It's the count of all the 'documentId'. It as analogous to a checksum.

Q16. Is it the intention of Massachusetts to stay in sync with the Federal 1120 electronic filing initiatives (MeF) with respect to binary attachments and the use of g-zip?

A16.
No. Although we allow the entire MIME file to be zip'd (pkzip or gzip) before transmission, we won't be supporting binary attachments of any kind within our XML schema or at the MIME Boundary level. This includes PDFs, etc.

Q17. Will Massachusetts indicate form copy number in your reject xpath for a reject that applies to a specific copy of a multiple copy form?

A17.
Yes.

Q18. Will an ack batch file have the same file name as its corresponding return batch or will it have a different extension?

A18.
Yes, with an added extension of .ack

Q19. Will there be one directory in which return files are placed, and another directory from which we get ack files?

A19.
Yes. The directory returns are sent to is the "upload" directory, while ack files are in the download\FIDxxxxxxxxx directory. See the Mass EF Vendor Guide for details.

Q20. Does the document count include the header? What other forms should be included?

A20.
DocumentCount should equal the number of distinct DocumentID's that follow. This does not include ReturnHeader, since the ReturnHeader doesn't have a DocumentID.

Q21. DocID - More than one occurrence cannot have the same ID, what is wanted in the attribute?

A21. Any unique value.

Q22. Do extension and regular returns need to have different file extensions?

A22. The name of the file used for transmission should be chosen so that you can easily associate the acknowledgements with the original file.

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