2-D Bar Code Specifications 2012

2-D Bar Coded forms are not being accepted for 2012 tax forms. Prior year forms will still be accepted. For further information contact Michael Sutter at 608-264-9942 or email at michael.sutter@revenue.wi.gov.

Wisconsin uses NACTP's established guidelines for 2-D bar codes with one exception. We require the X (horizontal) dimension be no less than 15 mils. ensuring the highest possible read rate on your client's documents. We use a PDF417 format 2-D bar code and will read the bar codes at 200 DPI. The bar codes on the forms listed below must have an X to Y ratio of three. The error correction DDL must be set to four. The X (horizontal) dimension of the bar code element must range from a minimum of 15 mils. to a maximum of 25 mils. If your company cannot implement the 2-D bar code, you still need to produce a 1-D bar code and leave the space blank where the 2-D bar code would have been placed.

APPROVAL PROCESS - 1-D documents must be approved before 2-D testing will be conducted.

Make sure that:

  1. If no entry is required for a data field, leave the field blank. Do not enter alpha characters such as “none” or “zero” in a financial field. Do not draw lines through a field that should be left blank.
  2. All data must be placed in the specific area designated for a field.
  3. Always include a 1-D bar code on the documents and schedules even though the 2-D bar code is being used.
  4. The printing of the 2-D should be the default option in the software.
  5. Once a 2-D bar code is generated for a completed tax document, no information on the document can be altered. If information is altered, a new 2-D bar code will need to be generated for the document. Inform all clients that they cannot change entries on the tax return sent to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue once the 2-D bar code is generated on the return. Any changes made to the document after the 2-D bar code is generated will be lost in processing the tax document.
  6. All alpha characters must be capitalized.

Forms Development

Data Layouts and Form
Form 1 + H or CR or OS or JC or CG or VE and EM (layout , form)
Form 1 + H-EZ or CR or OS or JC or CG or VE and EM (layout , form)
Form 1 + FC or FC-A or CR or OS or JC or CG or VE or EM (layout , form)
Form 1NPR + FC or FC-A or CR or OS or JC or CG or VE or EM (layout , form)
Form 1NPR + H or CR or OS or JC or CG or VE or EM (layout , form)

Document Testing Procedure

Submit 1-D returns for approval. Once approval is achieved on the 1-D return, submit 2-D bar coded test returns for approval. Test results will be sent via e-mail.


2135 Rimrock Rd., 4-163
P.O. Box 8903
Madison, WI 53708-8903
E-mail Additional Questions

Last updated December 27, 2012