The Employer Identification Number (EIN), sometimes referred to as the Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) or Federal Tax Identification Number, is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to business entities operating in the United States for identification purposes.
It’s basically like a social security number for your business.
What is the Purpose of an EIN:
- Online: The fastest method is to apply online via the IRS website. Once the application is completed, the number is issued immediately. The official IRS link for online EIN application is:
- Fax or Mail: You can fill out the SS-4 form and send it via fax or mail. If faxed, the EIN is usually processed within a week. If mailed, expect a wait of about 4 weeks.
- Phone: International applicants can obtain an EIN by calling 267-941-1099.
WARNING: Beware of Scams
It’s essential to be wary of scams related to EIN acquisition. Some services charge unnecessary fees or misleadingly pose as official entities. Always use the official IRS website or trusted sources.
- No Fees on IRS: The IRS doesn’t charge for obtaining an EIN.
- Always Double-Check URLs: Scammers can create websites that look official. Make sure the website you’re on is the genuine IRS website. Check the URL carefully.
- Never Share Sensitive Info Lightly: Be cautious about whom you share your personal or business information with, especially online.
Changing or Cancelling an EIN:
- Changing: If the structure or ownership of your business changes, you might need a new EIN.
- Canceling: You cannot technically “cancel” an EIN, but you can close your account with the IRS. This involves contacting the IRS and notifying them you want to close your business account.
Being informed about the EIN retrieval process and potential scams ensures a smoother journey in establishing and operating your business entity.
Contact Ana Law if you have any questions about your EIN.