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FEDERAL TAX ID (EIN) FAQS
EIN, also known as the Employer Identification Number (EIN) or the Federal Tax Identification Number (Tax ID Number) stands for Federal Employer Identification Number. It is one of the forms of what is known as a federal tax identification number. An FEIN is one of the major forms of federal tax identification numbers. The three main forms of tax identification numbers are an FEIN, a Social Security Number and an ITIN number. An FEIN Number is a federal tax id number that is assigned to a business entity such as a Corporation or a Limited Liability Company (LLC). It is the number that identifies the business for tax purposes. An EIN Number is a unique 9 digit number assigned from the IRS. The digits of an EIN are formatted as follows: XX-XXXXXXX. A Social Security Number is the tax id number that is assigned to every individual US citizen. For business tax purposes a Social Security Number is used when a business is structured as a sole proprietorship (a business with one sole owner). Sole proprietorships use a Social Security Number by default for tax purposes but may apply for an FEIN number for tax purposes. A sole proprietorship and a single member LLC are the only business structures that have the option to either use a Social Security Number or an FEIN number. The last form of tax identification number is what is known as an ITIN number (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number). This is the tax ID number for Non US citizens who cannot obtain a social security number.
EIN, also known as the Employer Identification Number is a unique 9 digit number assigned from the IRS that identifies the business for tax purposes. The digits of an EIN are formatted as follows: XX-XXXXXXX.
Many people are confused and type in Google “EIN vs FEIN”, trying to find out if these are the same exact number. The answer is yes. EIN (Employer Identification Number) is the short way to say it, as it’s lacking the word Federal (Federal Employer Identification Number). An EIN or FEIN Number is a unique 9 digit number assigned from the IRS. The digits of an EIN are formatted as follows: 12-3456789.
The short answer is no. Your Social Security Number is issued by the Social Security Administration, while the Tax ID Number is issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). While both an FEIN and a Social Security Number have 9 digits and look the same, an FEIN number has the dash after the first two digits (example 12-3456789) while a Social Security Number has the dash after the third digit (123-45-6789). Entrepreneurs and businesses use an EIN to conduct business activities that would otherwise require a Social Security Number (SSN).
An EIN can be used by the following entities: Sole Proprietorship, Partnership, Corporations, S-Corporations, Limited Liability Company, Non Profit Organizations and Trusts.
An EIN can be used to form a legal business structure (Partnership, Corporation, or LLC), to open a business bank account, for employee payroll, to file business taxes, to apply for a business line of credit or business credit card and applying for Business Licenses.
You would need an EIN if you are structured as a Corporation, Multi Member LLC or a Partnership. You would need one if you have employees, file employment or file excise tax returns. You would also need one if you administer a retirement plan such as a Keogh plan. Obtaining an EIN is one of the first steps to start a business.
At the federal level these two terms are used interchangeably. However, many people mix these terms up when they are referring to a Tax ID Number at the state level. A State Tax ID Number is used to remit sales tax at the state level and has no direct correlation with an FEIN.
The only two company structures that can operate without an FEIN are Sole Proprietors (Individuals) and a Single Member LLC (No employees). You would need to have an FEIN before you open a bank account, hire employees, apply for a business line or credit or company credit card and before applying for Business Licenses.
While it is uncommon for a new EIN application to be denied, it still can happen. The most common reason for a rejection is if your business name is already taken by someone else, your address does not verify and match, or you simply forgot to fill out some required information. At that point, you could contact the IRS directly to see what went wrong.
There are multiple situations where you would need to obtain a new EIN. Most of the requirements for these situations would be dictated by the form of the company structure. A Sole Proprietor would need a new EIN if it incorporates, files for bankruptcy, or changes to a Partnership. A Partnership would need a new EIN if it incorporates, the Partnership dissolves and a new one begins, or one partner takes over the Partnership and runs it as a Sole Proprietor. An LLC would need a new EIN if it has more than one owner (Multi Member LLC) or chooses to be taxed as a Corporation or subchapter S Corporation. A Corporation would need a new EIN if it changes its status to a Corporation, Partnership, or Sole Proprietor, if it merges with another company or is taken over and becomes a subsidiary of another company or if it receives a new charter from the secretary of state. A Trust would need a new EIN if it changes its structure to a different form of Trust, if the grantor of the Trust becomes the grantor of multiple Trusts, or if the Trust changes structure to an Estate. An Estate needs a new EIN if the Estate operates a business after the owner is deceased or if a trust is created with monies from the Estate changing its structure.
The easiest way to apply for an EIN is by filling out an SS-4 online. Our eServices forms are available anytime 24/7/365. Apply now and obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) by filling out the EIN Online Application form. It is Easy, Fast and Secure. After you complete the online process you will receive your EIN together with important information within 1-2 business days.
Under most circumstances, you do not need a new FEIN simply because your business changes locations as this is a very common occurrence. You would however have to update your new business location with the IRS by using the Form 8822-B.
Under most circumstances you do not need a new FEIN simply because your business changes its name. It is even possible for two separate companies to operate with the same name as the FEINs are separate and tied to each individual business. You would only get a new FEIN when you change the company name if you also change the structure of the company.
If your company operates within US borders, then it is still subject to the same IRS rules as all other businesses. To apply for a FEIN you would need to have a valid Social Security number or an ITIN number.
Yes, If you have separate businesses that are their own individual legal entities, then you would need a separate EIN number for each of them.
You will need certain information such as the Legal Name of Entity, Responsible Party information (Name, Home Address, Social Security Number), Business/ Mailing Address and Contact E-mail / Phone Number.
In case you already have an EIN Number but cannot find or recall it, you can retrieve it in various ways such as:
- Reach out to the bank that you used your EIN to open a business account and request it
- Find a past business tax return
- Call the IRS’s Business and Specialty Tax Line during business at (800) 829-4933
An ITIN (Individual Taxpayer Identification Number) is a TAX ID Number that is given to non US persons. For example, a US citizen or permanent resident would be issued a Federal EIN using their Social Security Number. A US non resident alien or other foreign person, would use the ITIN in order to apply for a Federal EIN Number.