A tax ID number, also known as an Employer Identification Number (EIN), is a unique nine-digit number used by the IRS to identify your business and its tax returns.
By understanding what an EIN is, how it works, and where to find one for your business, you’re well on your way to being on top of your company’s taxes.
What is EIN or TIN
An EIN or TIN stands for Employer Identification Number or Taxpayer Identification Number, respectively. EIN is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the IRS to sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, non-profits, trusts, and other entities for tax filing and reporting purposes. TIN is a unique nine-digit number assigned to individuals for tax filing and reporting purposes.
Many small businesses prefer to use their own EIN because they are independent of other companies and can be used for multiple businesses.
This includes when;
- Starting a new business
- Changing your legal structure
- Paying taxes as an individual instead of through a partnership, LLC, or corporation
- Registering with the state as an LLC or corporation
How to Get Your Tax ID Number or EIN
If you are starting a business, a sole proprietorship, or are already a partner in an existing business, you will need to get a federal tax identification number (also an EIN), which you can get through the IRS website.
You can apply for EINs for yourself and your business entities at the same time by following these steps:
- Go to the IRS website and click on “Apply Online Now”.
- Enter your Social Security number and other required information. If you have an existing account with the IRS, enter your username and password. Otherwise, enter all the requested information, including your name, address, and employer’s name.
- Complete Form SS-4, Application for Employer Identification Number, Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number, and Certification if you are applying for an EIN for yourself only, not as part of a business.
- Submit your application electronically or by mail once you complete it correctly on.
Does Your Business Need an Employer Identification Number
An EIN is a number that identifies you as a business owner. It’s used for reporting taxes and is required if you want to open a bank account, apply for credit, or register your company with the state.
You don’t need an EIN if you’re operating as a sole proprietorship or partnership. But if you’re operating as a corporation or limited liability company, then you need one.
There are two types of EINs: individual and employer. A single person who owns a sole proprietorship doesn’t need an individual EIN, he or she can use his or her SSN instead. But if there are multiple people involved in running the business, such as with a partnership or LLC, then each person needs their own individual EIN. You only need to apply for an EIN once and it will be good forever.
How to Find Your Tax ID Number
1. Search Through Your Tax document
You will need to search through your tax documents to find your tax ID. You can find it on the W-2 form that was issued at the end of the year. You should also keep a copy of this document in your records because you can use it as proof of identity if you ever need one.
2. Ask Your Payroll Department
If you’re self-employed, you’re responsible for keeping track of your own tax ID number. However, it’s not necessarily an easy task.
If you have to ask your payroll department for the tax ID number, make sure to ask early in the year. If you wait until April 15th, they may be too late to assign one. Your company will need plenty of time to process your request and get everything squared away before the deadline.
3. Call IRS
You can use the account lookup tool on the IRS website or ask for help from an accountant or tax preparer.
If you’re unsure of your social security number (SSN), don’t worry. You can still get help from a tax professional.
When calling the IRS, you’ll need:
- Your name, including any former names
- Date of birth
- Address where you received mail last year
4. Visit the IRS website
You can visit the IRS website to find your tax ID number. The site has a search tool that allows you to enter your Social Security number, employer (number), or other identifying information to find your Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).
The first step is to verify that the information you’re entering is correct. If possible, you will also need your Social Security number and date of birth. If you don’t have this information available, you may use an Employer Identification Number (EIN) instead.
And if this is the case, call the IRS and provide additional information as needed. If you still can’t find your TIN after trying these methods, contact the IRS directly 800-829-1040 or visit IRS support page.
How To Revoke Your EIN
If you have an EIN for a business that no longer exists, you can cancel it. If your business has been dissolved, you don’t need to file Form SS-4 again to get a new EIN. Instead, use the Employer Identification Number (EIN) Application on IRS.gov to request a new EIN and then use that number on all tax returns filed.
If your business is still active but no longer needs to use an EIN, you can cancel your existing EIN by filing Form SS-4 with your local SSA office. You’ll need to include proof of identity, such as a driver’s license or passport, as well as proof of citizenship or legal residence in the United States, such as a birth certificate or immigration documents.
The owners of a sole proprietorship or a partnership do not need to get a separate EIN for the business. However, sole proprietors and partners must still inform the IRS of their business activities.
If your company made a profit because it had regular business transactions with customers and suppliers, you must pay taxes on that income even if you are incorporated. You need to report your annual revenues in your personal 1040 tax return.
Your corporation is considered as an entity completely separate from yourself. Therefore, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires all corporations to register for an EIN or a federal tax identification number, regardless of size.
People Also Asked
The IRS doesn’t have any database where you can look up an EIN for your business or any other business at that. However, that doesn’t mean there is no way to find your EIN number. Check your EIN confirmation letter, tax returns files, financial documents, or any other documents your EIN is usually indicated.
As long as you don’t involve any third parties in teh process, the IRS doesn’t charge any money to apply for an EIN.
You can use these two terms interchangeably. However, there are many types of identification numbers a business may have. They include State ID Numbers, Business license Numbers, and more.