How To Apply For A Federal Tax ID Number

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General information for those unfamiliar with Employer Identification Numbers


Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a vital component in a business set up that cannot be ignored by any serious American entrepreneur. In order to stay out of trouble with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), EIN is a must-have necessity in many businesses within USA soil.

What exactly does Employer Identification Number Entail?

Many questions are often raised especially among new entrepreneurs on what an EIN is. Well, it is important that you have sound understanding on EIN especially if you want to start a business in USA.

Employer Identification Number (EIN) is much like a social security number for distinctive taxpayers. This 9- digit number is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number. It enables the IRS to identify your company thus enabling you as a business owner to conduct activities that would need a social security number like tax filing and reporting.

Who qualifies for an EIN?

Several entrepreneurs have numerous questions on whether or not they are ideal candidates for an EIN. We thought we provide answers to this.

According to IRS directives, the following business scopes should have an EIN;

Why You need an Employer Identification Number

Avoid identity theft

Getting an EIN is one of the ways you can protect your business against identity theft which has been a rampant habit in USA today. Identity thieves usually steal taxpayer’s social security number to submit fraudulent tax returns or get tax refunds.

It is thus very important that you avoid using your personal security number and try keeping it as private as possible. The EIN provide a good option in this case.

Establishing Independent Contractor Status

Embracing an EIN in your business activities to file tax returns and make payments shows that you are an independent business person and not an employee. This is especially important when your business operates in partnership with other companies.

It can make you command huge respect and trust from prospective clients hence putting you at a higher end of bagging in lucrative deals.

You have Employees

According to the American taxation policy requirements, any individual earning an income need to remit a certain percentage as a tax to the government. As a result, if you pay wages to one or more employees, you must obtain an EIN to use on the tax returns you submit to the IRS.

When you have Keogh Plan

A Keogh plan is a tax-deferred pension plan for self-employed people for the purpose of retirement. Establishing a Keogh plan requires that you use an Employer Identification Number according to the IRS regulations.

Change of the business structure

You will need a new EIN if you change the structure of your business. For instance, you will be required to get a new EIN if you change the business form a corporation to partnership or sole proprietorship. In case, you become a new subsidiary of a corporation, or you end an old partnership and begin a new one, you also need to file for a new EIN.

Other restructuring factors that may prompt for a new EIN include partnership being taken over by others, a new corporation created due to merger, or a corporation getting new charter from the secretary of state.

Tax Withholding

Every business person is required to apply for an Employer Identification Number if he or she withholds taxes on income apart from the wages paid to somebody who does not reside within the country or state. In any case, you identify yourself with this clause, and you have not taken the initiative to apply for EIN, you better hurry because IRS will be on your neck very soon.

Involving yourself with organizations indicated on the IRS website

If you are involved with organizations such as farmers cooperatives, plan administrators, certain trusts, real estate conduits, and non-profit organizations listed on the IRS website, then you must have an Employer Identification Number to enable you to do a proper documentation on your tax returns.

If you have a corporation or Partnership business structure

According to the IRS requirements, it is a mandatory thing for business under corporation or partnership flagships to have an EIN. Sole proprietors who don’t have employees are usually exempted.

Opening a bank account in the business name

Apart from filling tax returns, Employer Identification Number is also a vital document which must be present in case you want to open a business bank account. Many banks will require that you to produce EIN alongside other copies of the business formation documents.

Applying for a credit card in the business name.

Employer Identification Number is also important to document in case you want to apply for credit card in the business name. You must have a good history of paying taxes as this will form a strong basis for evaluation to determine whether you can qualify for a credit card or not. In other words, your tax paying history must be a clean slate if you want to qualify for a credit card in the business name.

Obtaining a business Permit

Getting an Employer Identification Number is one of the preliminary preparations when starting a business. For instance, if it is a partnership or a limited liability company with several employees, one must have Employer Identification Number to operate such business.

How to Apply for EIN

There are several options for applying EIN. However, the most reliable fast and convenient way is to use online services such as which is approved and certified to offer professional document preparation services specializing in Employer Identification Numbers.

While applying, you will be required to disclose the name and the ID number of the taxpayer responsible for the business. You will get your EIN between 7 a.m. and 10 pm local time, Monday to Friday. Once you have been issued with an EIM, it is solely yours and cannot be subject to transfer for use in any other business.