An Employer Identification Number, commonly called an EIN, is a unique, nine-digit number used by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for tracking tax obligations in the US. All US citizens and permanent residents have a Social Security Number (SSN), which enables these individuals to apply for an EIN. However, those without a SSN (non-citizens and foreign workers) may wonder how to get an EIN without a SSN if they wish to start a business in a US territory.
How to Get an EIN Without a SSN
There are two ways to obtain an EIN without a SSN. The first way is to apply for the required SSN before applying for an EIN; or, apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, or ITIN for short.
If you are an immigrant, you can apply for a SSN at the same time you file an application for an immigrant visa with the US Department of State. If you combine these applications, you may not need to visit the Social Security Office once you arrive in the US.
You can also visit the Social Security Office once you arrive in the US to apply for a SSN. Once you’ve successfully received your SSN, you can then apply for an EIN.
Some people will not be eligible to apply for a SSN. In this case, the IRS uses ITINs to identify foreign nationals and non-resident aliens who have federal tax reporting requirements.
To apply for an ITIN, you will need to file Form W-7, provide proof of a valid federal income tax return, as well as documentation that proves your identity.
A SSN and ITIN may be used interchangeably on the EIN application.
Get an EIN Online
Once you’ve received a SSN, or ITIN, you can get an EIN online.
Our online application is the fastest and easiest way to obtain this essential tax ID for your business. In most cases, we return your request within 24 hours; plus, you can check the status of your EIN online anytime you need to.
Don’t wait to get this important tax ID for your business.