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Application for Employer Identification Number (EIN)

The IRS uses employer identification numbers (EINs) to keep track of businesses.

Your business must have an EIN if it:

  • Has employees
  • Operates as a corporation or partnership
  • Has a qualified retirement plan
  • Is required to file a return for any of these:
    • Employment tax
    • Excise tax
    • Alcohol, tobacco, and firearms
  • Is required to withhold taxes on income other than wages paid to a nonresident alien

The IRS also requires an EIN for:

  • Trusts, except for:
    • Certain grantor-owned revocable trusts
    • Exempt organization business income returns
    • IRAs
  • Estates
  • Real estate mortgage investment conduits (REMICs)
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Farmers' cooperatives
  • Plan administrators

You can get an EIN by filing Form SS-4. To get this form, visit www.irs.gov. File the form via:

  • Phone -- Complete the form before calling 800-829-4933. You'll get a number for immediate use.
  • Online -- Visit www.irs.gov/businesses, and click Employer ID Numbers (EINs). You'll get a number for immediate use.
  • Fax -- Complete the form and fax it to your area’s fax number, found on the form. The IRS should process your faxed request within four business days.
  • Mail -- See Form SS-4 instructions for your area’s mailing address. The IRS should process your mailed request within approximately four to six weeks.

If you'd like to learn more, see Publication 1635: Understanding Your EIN at www.irs.gov.

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