Skip to content

How to get Tax Payer Identification Number (TIN)

A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is an identification number used by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the administration of tax laws. It is issued either by the Social Security Administration (SSA) or by the IRS. A Social Security number (SSN) is issued by the SSA whereas all other TINs are issued by the IRS.

Taxpayer Identification Numbers

  • Social Security Number "SSN"
  • Employer Identification Number "EIN"
  • Individual Taxpayer Identification Number "ITIN"
  • Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U.S. Adoptions "ATIN"
  • Preparer Taxpayer Identification Number "PTIN"

Do I Need One?

A TIN must be furnished on returns, statements, and other tax related documents. For example a number must be furnished:

  • When filing your tax returns.
  • When claiming treaty benefits.

A TIN must be on a withholding certificate if the beneficial owner is claiming any of the following:

  • Tax treaty benefits (other than for income from marketable securities)
  • Exemption for effectively connected income
  • Exemption for certain annuities

When Claiming Exemptions for Dependent or Spouse

You generally must list on your individual income tax return the social security number (SSN) of any person for whom you claim an exemption. If your dependent or spouse does not have and is not eligible to get an SSN, you must list the ITIN instead of an SSN. You do not need an SSN or ITIN for a child who was born and died in the same tax year. Instead of an SSN or ITIN, attach a copy of the child's birth certificate and write Died on the appropriate exemption line of your tax return.

How Do I Get A TIN?

SSN

You will need to complete Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card (PDF). You also must submit evidence of your identity, age, and U.S. citizenship or lawful alien status. For more information please see the Social Security Administration web site.

Form SS-5 is also available by calling 1-800-772-1213 or visiting your local Social Security office. These services are free.

EIN

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a federal tax identification number, and is used to identify a business entity. It is also used by estates and trusts which have income which is required to be reported on Form 1041, U.S. Income Tax Return for Estates and Trusts. Refer to Employer ID Numbers for more information./~lethbrid/files/fss4(1).pdf

ITIN

An ITIN, or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, is a tax processing number only available for certain nonresident and resident aliens, their spouses, and dependents who cannot get a Social Security Number (SSN). It is a 9-digit number, beginning with the number "9", formatted like an SSN (NNN-NN-NNNN). Form W-7 needs to be completed /~lethbrid/files/fw7(1).pdf

We take care of your books for you, so you can get back to the job of running your business and generating profits.
Learn More...
We offer payroll solutions that meet your business's needs and enable you to spend time doing what you do best--running your company.
Learn More...
We offer a variety of services to help make sure that you are taking full advantage of Quickbooks' many features.
Learn more...
We're here to help you resolve your tax problems and put an end to the misery that the IRS can put you through.
Learn More...
We offer one-on-one guidance and a comprehensive financial plan that helps manage risk, improve performance, and ensure the growth and longevity of your wealth.
Learn More...

© Don G. O'Brien Professional Corporation 2021