ITIN Certification: How to Get a Tax ID NumberPat Fontana
Individuals who do not have a Social Security number but who need to file tax returns will have to obtain an identification number so they can comply with US tax laws. This number is known as an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). It’s important to know how to get a tax ID number, including how an Acceptance Agent helps with ITIN certification.
What Is an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number?
Quite simply, the ITIN is a tax processing number. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issues this number to individuals who do not have and are not eligible to obtain a Social Security number. The ITIN is required for these individuals to be able to file a tax return.
The ITIN enables people without Social Security numbers to comply with US tax laws. The number provides the IRS with the ability to process and account for the tax returns and tax payments for those individuals. The number’s only purpose is for federal tax reporting. An ITIN does not authorize an individual to work in the US, provide eligibility for Social Security benefits, or qualify a dependent for Earned Income Tax Credit Purposes.
Who Needs an ITIN?
An ITIN is issued to an individual regardless of immigration status. Both resident and nonresident aliens may need to file a return with the IRS. You will need an ITIN if you:
- Do not have a Social Security number and are not eligible to obtain one
- Have a requirement to furnish a federal tax identification number or file a federal tax return
- Are in one of the following categories:
- Nonresident alien who is required to file a U.S. tax return
- U.S. resident alien who is (based on days present in the United States) filing a U.S. tax return
- Dependent or spouse of a U.S. citizen/resident alien
- Dependent or spouse of a nonresident alien visa holder
- Nonresident alien claiming a tax treaty benefit
- Nonresident alien student, professor or researcher filing a U.S. tax return or claiming an exception
How to Get a Tax ID Number
To apply for an ITIN, you will need to complete the IRS form W-7, an Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. You will need to include original or certified copies of documentation substantiating your true identity and your foreign or alien status. The form is also available in Spanish.
You can apply for the ITIN anytime during the year. You can also complete form W-7 when you are ready to file your federal income tax return. Be sure to submit both by the due date for the tax filing to avoid penalties and interest.
You can complete the documentation and mail everything, including your tax return, to the IRS at the following address:
Internal Revenue Service
Austin Service Center
P.O. Box 149342
Austin, TX 78714-9342
Applying for the ITIN is the only time you will submit your tax return to this address. Once you receive the ID number, future returns should be submitted according to the applicable directions for your location.
The process to receive your ITIN takes about seven weeks. If you think you will need your documentation within 60 days of submitting your application, you may opt to apply in person at an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center.
You can also enlist the help of an Acceptance Agent to assist you in applying for the ITIN certification. When you use an IRS-authorized agent, you will not need to mail your proof of identity and foreign status documents.
What Is an Acceptance Agent?
A Certifying Acceptance Agent is an individual or a business, such as Clear View Business Solutions, that is authorized to assist individuals who do not qualify for a Social Security number in the process of applying for a Taxpayer Identification Number. The Certifying Acceptance Agent facilitates the application process by meeting with the individual in person and reviewing the necessary documentation. The agent can then authenticate the individual’s identity and forward the completed forms to the IRS.
Acceptance Agents undergo mandatory training and must adhere to the quality standards that are established and monitored by the IRS. They also much cooperate with IRS compliance checks as well as respond to requests for information from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration or the Government Accountability Office.
Contact Clear View for Help with ITIN Certification
The professionals at Clear View Business Solutions can help you with an expedited ITIN application process, as a Certifying Acceptance Agent. We help eliminate the complications of submitting original documentation to the IRS, so you will not have to be without it during the processing time, which could be as long as 60 days. We work with you to fully understand your situation and to ensure that all documentation is accurate and compliant.
Learn more about how we can help you by contacting Clear View Business Solutions to speak to our team about our services. Give us a call at (520) 544-0177.