If you have started a business, formed a trust or are administering an estate, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires you to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN). An EIN, also known as a Federal Employer Identification Number or Tax Identification Number, is a unique number assigned to a business, trust or estate. Obtaining an EIN from the IRS, which is free, requires filing form SS-4.
Download Form SS-4 from the IRS website (see Resources). The IRS provides a copy of Form SS-4 in PDF format that can be printed, filled out and filed with the IRS.
Provide contact information for your organization in Part I. Provide the name and trade name of your business, the executor of the estate or administrator of the trust. Provide the mailing address of the business, estate or trust. Indicate the name and Social Security number of the person responsible for administering the business, estate or trust.
Provide identifying information about your organization. On line 8a, indicate whether your organization is an LLC. If so, indicate the amount of members in line 8b and whether it was organized in the United States on line 8c. On line 9a, indicate the type of entity. If your organization is a corporation, indicate whether it was incorporated in line 9b. Check the appropriate box for the reason you are applying for an EIN on line 10 and the date the organization was started on line 11.
Provide information about employees. Provide the closing month of your organization's accounting year on line 12. Indicate how many employees your organization will hire, if appropriate, on line 13. Indicate whether you will need to file Form 941 on line 14. On line 15, indicate the first date on which you paid wages.
Provide information about your business. If your organization is a business, indicate its principal activity on line 16. If your business sells merchandise, briefly describe what kind of merchandise on line 17. Indicate whether your organization has previously applied for an EIN on line 18.
Sign and date the form. If you wish to have a third party, such as a corporate officer, receive the EIN, provide their contact information in the Third Party Designee box.
File Form SS-4. The address for filing Form SS-4 (see Resources) depends on whether the organization maintains a place of business or agency in a state.