EIN Numbers
EIN Form SS-4

Employer Identification Number:
EIN and Sole Proprieships

Employer Identification Number - EIN

EIN Numbers - Employers must apply for and obtain a federal Employee Identification Number, EIN from the Internal Revenue Service. The EIN is an employer's account number for the collection and reporting of taxes withheld and wages paid to the employees.

Your Employer Identification Number, EIN will be a nine digit-number that takes the form: 12-3456789. It is assigned to sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, estates, trusts, and other entities for filing and reporting purposes. All partnerships, corporations, and trusts need an EIN Number, even if they have no employees. Sole proprietors generally need one only if they have employees, have a Keogh pension plan, or must pay certain federal excise taxes. Sole proprietors need to have an Employer Identification Number only if they have one or more employees, if they have a Keogh plan, or if they are required to file excise tax forms such as those for sales tax, alcohol or tobacco.

Employer Identification Number - EIN and Previous Owner

If you purchase an existing business for which an EIN is needed, use your own Employer Identification Number, EIN or get a new one--don't use the, EIN of the previous owner. If you operate more than one business as a sole proprietor, you should use the same EIN for each one; if you operate businesses in forms other than sole proprietorship, you'll need a separate Employer Identification Number, for each business entity. Household employers are also required to complete Form SS-4 to get an EIN, even if your only employees are household employees (such as domestic workers like maids, baby sitters, drivers, etc.) in your private home.

To apply for an EIN, you can file the IRS Form SS-4, Application for Employer Identification Number, with the appropriate IRS Service Center for your state. If you apply by mail, it generally takes about four weeks to receive the number. If you need to file your tax return before you receive the Employer Identification Number, EIN, write "applied for" in the space where the EIN should go.

In addition to the federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) you'll need to obtain, you may also need to secure identification numbers or account numbers from the various state and local taxing jurisdictions to which you will be reporting, depositing, and paying taxes. In many states, the federal EIN is also used for state income tax reporting purposes.

You, the employer, must register for identification or account numbers for use in income tax reporting and in state unemployment tax and wage reporting. Call your state department of revenue to find out how to get a number. In most cases, you will then receive forms or coupon books to use when making required deposits.

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