Read on further to clarify any ambiguity about getting an ITIN number!
What is an ITIN used for?
ITINs help individuals comply with US tax laws. The application provides a smooth process for payments and tax returns for those who need help to obtain an SSN (Social Security Number) in the US.
Read our article on the clear difference between ITIN and SSN to understand why you need an ITIN as a foreigner in the US!
Both US residents and non-US residents can obtain the ITIN regardless of immigration status. There is no purpose of ITIN other than the US federal tax reporting. Moreover, ITIN comes with some conditions:
- Not provide any social security benefits like SSA do
- Not provide authority to work in the US
- Applicable for a dependent for earned income tax purposes
Who Needs An ITIN?
Individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN) is a nine-digit number issued to both resident and non-resident aliens. An alien is an individual who is not a US national or US citizen. An ITIN applies to both who wish to earn income from the US since they’re obligated to pay taxes in the US. If you wish to form a C-Corp in the US or any other business entity, you must understand the complex tax norms as a non-US resident. You must get the help of an expert attorney in this regard.
Other than nonresident aliens, people who need ITIN include:
- A resident alien of the US based on days present in the country
- A spouse or dependent of a US citizen or resident alien
- A spouse or dependent of a nonresident alien visa holder
How To Apply An ITIN?
Before applying for an ITIN, you must have a US tax filing requirement along with filing a federal income tax return. An ITIN application includes:
- W-7 Form
- Identity Proof
- US Federal Income Tax Return
- Foreign Status Proof
Thirteen countries in general will accept foreign status and identity proof. However, using your passport is the most common and easiest way. You need to start by submitting the W-7 form. For a US federal income tax return, you need to hire an expert specializing in US taxes.
Submitting W-7 Form
It is an application of the IRS for ITIN. Here, you must be highly careful as it’s likely common to mess up the Form W-7 without any expert help. An accountant who is listed as an IRS agent is strongly recommended. However, it’s good to know the process in advance so you can be on board with the accountant equally. The first thing for you is to determine the status of your application type.
Read through the boxes for a clear understanding.
- First of all, determine the reasons for getting an ITIN while reading through the boxes. The reasons may include ITIN renewal, ITIN for a spouse or dependent, treaty country, and the benefit being claimed. Check all the boxes according to your needs.
- Fill out the next box with your legal name as it appears on your documents of identity proofs.
- The next section is the applicant’s physical mailing address. You will receive an ITIN approval letter at this address along with any other original documents. The mailing address can be outside or within the US premises. There are two different sections for US and non-US addresses. You can fill it out accordingly. In case, if you moved permanently to the US, you can mention the last country you lived in another box.
- Then, there is the box of birth information, the city and state, the county, and the province if applicable. There is a specific way of writing dates in the W-7 form. Carefully consider all those implications.
- Then, there is the section on gender, male or female.
- Some other information includes the country and citizenship. For example, if you have citizenship of two countries then you must enter the names of both countries. If you have an ITIN already, then also mention it in the relevant section otherwise leave it blank. See the W-7 form instructions for all types of documentation and the statuses while entering those details in the section.
In the end, disclose the reason for submitting the W-7 form application and coin the possible reason relating to education and stay in the US in any case. Then, sign the form if you’re applying for an ITIN by yourself along with the date and phone number otherwise you can leave the digital row blank. If the ITIN application is in the hands of a dependent, then see the instructions again on how to sign the sections.
There is also a section of the applicant’s agent only. This is in case you’re hiring an acceptance agent to help with your tax return application. The agent will fill out the application and sign the form as you shouldn’t be completing this section. Always make a copy before submitting the W-7 form to the IRS. This should all come along with the supporting documentation and also for keeping with your business records.
You can send the completed form to the IRS by various means. It seems you have much on your plate when it comes to applying.
After completing the application with all the essentials, it’s time to mail your application correctly. There will be a mailing address mentioned in the form 1040A or 1040 instructions but do not use that. You need to mail your ITIN application with the W-7 form, identify proofs and documents to the IRS address at:
P.O. Box 149342
Austin, Texas 78714-9342
In Person Filing
There is also an option of filing in person of your ITIN application at a TAC (Taxpayer Assistance Center). There are also numerous taxpayer centers with a list where in-person documents are received. You call ahead of time to book appointments. Appointments can be fixed by calling at 844-545-5640. TACs can verify certified copies as well as original documentation from primary and secondary applicants. Dependents can apply for documents like national identification cards, passports, and birth certificates for verification. The documents will be returned immediately after verification.
Through An Agent
There are two types of agents that you can hire to do your job. The one is Accepted Agent (AA). This agent can help you complete the W-7 form and file it. Visit the IRS website and search for the accepted agent programs in the search bar. You need to submit certified copies and original documentation to the IRS for issuing the accepted agent. The exemption is for foreign military identification cards. The other type is Certified agents can only verify birth certificates and passports. If you’re a taxpayer residing outside the US, you can apply for an ITIN through a certified accepted agent (CAA). They will return the documentation immediately after reviewing its authenticity.
Through Private Delivery
Private delivery service can also be used as an efficient method of submitting the ITIN application. The delivery service could be used for submitting the W-7 form along with the tax return and other documents by exception. This also required all kinds of supporting documentation for your application.
You can send the application and documents at:
Internal Revenue Service
Mail Stop 6090-AUSC3651 S. Interregional, Hwy 35 Austin, TX 78741-0000
The private service will also confirm with you how to receive written proof of the mailing date.
Among all these methods, fastcorpusa.com will recommend you hire an accountant. An expert will not only help you to send the IRS application but also prepare your tax returns in the US.
ITIN Processing Time
You can expect to hear from the IRS about your ITIN application status within 2 months. You must ensure there is no false information reported and that all required documentation is provided to the IRS. In another case, there could be an unexpected delay. Incorrect or incomplete documentation may lead to a long process.
In case you don’t receive any response from the IRS within 2 months or seven weeks, you can call the IRS to check your ITIN application status.
If you’re in the US, call toll-free at (800) 829-1040
If you’re outside the US, call at (267) 941-1000
ITIN Application Approval
You will receive the mail from the IRS regarding your ITIN application approval as it is said before. You will receive a CP-565A notice in case your ITIN application is approved. There are some other notices as well that you must be aware of. The notice for returning the original documents is numbered as letter 5872. You will get this letter when the IRS returns the original documents like your proof of identity and other documents after verification. Then, there is a notice CP-565A. This means issuance of ITIN. You will be legally assigned an ITIN if you receive this notice. It simply means your ITIN application is approved and thus your journey of receiving ITIN is finally ended. In case you lose your ITIN, the IRS can send you a copy of the ITIN approval with CP-565B notice.
There might be a situation when your ITIN application is rejected. This simply occurs when you provide false or wrong information to the IRS. It is also taken as the most likely reason. Therefore, you need the help of an attorney as they specialize in helping foreigners. The notice issued by the IRS in case of rejecting the ITIN application is CP-567. The notice will explain briefly why your application is rejected. You can also call them for more information as a phone number will be mentioned in the letter. However, there is a scenario when they send you a CP-566 notice as this is in case of asking for missing or incomplete documents. The notice will tell you that the IRS needs more information to process your ITIN application.
You may need ITIN renewal for two reasons. First, if you didn’t use your ITIN for at least one year in the tax years 2014, 2015, and 2016. The chance is your ITIN will expire in December 2017. The other occasion is when your ITIN middle digits have numbers like 70,71,72 and 80. Your ITIN will expire also in December 2017. In case your ITIN is getting expired, you’ll receive the IRS notice CP-48. You will get it before your ITIN expires. So, the process of renewal is to submit the W-7 form along with the required documentation. You will check off the box named ‘Renew an Existing ITIN’.
Get more and possible information you could receive from online means in this regard! It will boost the process of getting an ITIN.
The process of getting an ITIN in the US is straightforward as there is no rocket science in it. However, contacting the IRS and getting success in one go is still a lot to take in. There is always one line that stands out throughout the procedure: If you make a mistake in the W-7 form, your application will be rejected.
Why bother applying at your own risk of making a mistake?
Instead, contact email@example.com. We will help you get through an ITIN process in a professional and stress-free way.
That way, you can ponder on what you do best in making money and building your C-Corp.