It is unclear in the instructions what to put in the "Principal Joint Owner" section for a joint account where the filer is also the principal owner.

Under the "Number of joint owners" in the previous section it says to omit the filer in the count. Also the instructions say

Items 25-33. Use the identifying information of the principal joint owner (excluding the filer) to complete Items 25-33.

This seems to indicate I should leave the "Principal Joint Owner" section blank if I am the principal owner, but there's enough ambiguity here that I'm not sure what to do.

Can anybody tell me definitively if my interpretation (leave it blank) is correct?

1 Answer 1


"Principal Joint Owner" means the principal person with whom you share the account, not the owner who has the "most control" over the account. If the account has 2 joint owners (including yourself), put the identifying information for the other joint owner in items 25-33. If there are 3 joint owners, pick the one (out of the other 2) who has the most control.

In other words, exclude yourself, sort the remaining joint owners by order of principalness, and pick the highest one.

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