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When closing a small business, there are many things to consider. On a federal level, a business typically must file an annual return for the year it goes out of business. Depending on the business structure or whether the business had employees, there are a number of tax forms that typically must be filed with the IRS before a business is deemed closed by the federal government, not to mention state tax requirements.
Once the fiscal responsibilities have been met and the entity has been formally dissolved, one step that is frequently overlooked is closing the EIN business account with the IRS.
Many business owners think that once all final tax filings have been made, the IRS will automatically close or discontinue the entity’s EIN, but just as the title of this article implies the EIN for the business is never discontinued, reassigned or reused. Regardless of whether or not an EIN was ever used, the number is PERMANENT. An EIN cannot be canceled by the IRS; however, the business account associated with the EIN may be closed. If the EIN is needed in the future, it will still belong to the business entity even after the account is closed.
To close a business account with the IRS, a written letter is required to be sent to: Internal Revenue Service, Cincinnati, OH 45999.
The letter must state the reason for closing the account and include the EIN, the complete legal name of the entity, and the business address. If a copy of the EIN Assignment Notice is available, be sure to include it with your letter. For entities that are deemed liable for business taxes or have been notified that business tax returns are due, the appropriate tax returns will need to be filed before the EIN account can be closed.
To be absolutely sure that all necessary filings have been made to close your business with local, state, and federal tax agencies, Harvard Business Services strongly suggests that you seek the assistance of a qualified tax professional. And please reach out to us if you need help closing your company.
Ultimately, the decision on whether you need a new EIN will be made by the IRS, but as a general rule, any time a business re-organizes it will need a new EIN. Examples of re-organization include:
Aside from re-organizing a business, most other changes typically do not require a new EIN. Some examples of changes that do not require a new EIN are:
These lists are not meant to cover all situations, but do cover a number of common changes we see everyday. If you still wonder whether or not you need a new EIN, check out this article on IRS.gov, Do You Need a New EIN?, or feel free to contact us for more information.
*Disclaimer*: Harvard Business Services, Inc. is neither a law firm nor an accounting firm and, even in cases where the author is an attorney, or a tax professional, nothing in this article constitutes legal or tax advice. This article provides general commentary on, and analysis of, the subject addressed. We strongly advise that you consult an attorney or tax professional to receive legal or tax guidance tailored to your specific circumstances. Any action taken or not taken based on this article is at your own risk. If an article cites or provides a link to third-party sources or websites, Harvard Business Services, Inc. is not responsible for and makes no representations regarding such source’s content or accuracy. Opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Harvard Business Services, Inc.
There are 6 comments left for An EIN Number Lasts Forever…and Ever…and Everhesham mohamed said: Thursday, July 25, 2019
Dear All I'm going to open an account at amazon E.commerce, an individual seller I'm nonresident & not USA citizen I'm from Egypt, so my inquiry is, can I get EIN & ITIN without establishing LLC company? thanks for cooperationHBS Staff replied: Monday, July 29, 2019
Hesham, an EIN is generally used for a business entity, such as an LLC or corporation. We have a resource specifically for setting up an Amazon business. Perhaps this will help you: https://www.delawareinc.com/blog/using-delaware-company-amazon-seller-business/Liz said: Saturday, June 8, 2019
I purchased an EIN number and LLC from you for my business back in 2007. After a while, I stopped renewing the LLC. I still continued to use the EIN number for tax purposes since my business remained opened. Am I able to put the LLC back on my business years later and still keep my EIN number?HBS Staff replied: Wednesday, June 12, 2019
Liz, please contact our filings department via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone and provide us with the name of the company and/or state of DE file number so we can research the revival options. As for the EIN, the number stays active until the client cancel it directly with the IRS.Essam Ibrahim?? said: Sunday, November 25, 2018
Hi, Can you help me after getting the EIN by your Company open a Bank business account while I am not resident in the US. Thank you in advance. P.S. Also, can I use these informations to open a personal nonresident account in US bank.HBS Staff replied: Monday, November 26, 2018
Essam - Unfortunately, we do not provide assistance with opening a U.S. bank account. One of the most common and inflexible requirements for opening a business bank account in the United States is showing up in person to do so. Once you've decided on a bank, it's generally a good idea to call ahead to see what is required to open the account, since requirements differ from bank to bank.Justin Ray said: Thursday, April 12, 2018
Can I use my win and change my company name and address with the service you provide?HBS Staff replied: Thursday, April 12, 2018
We can help you change your company's name with a Certificate of Amendment but in order to change your address with the IRS, you must contact the IRS directly. Here is a bit more information:
Ken said: Saturday, February 3, 2018
I applied for an EIN in 2005 for a business that was a partnership, the partnership ended in 2010. I haven't done business since but wish to start it up again. Do I apply for a new EIN number as Sole Propreitor now or use the old number? Thanks.HBS Staff replied: Monday, February 5, 2018
Typically when starting a new venture with a new company, clients often obtain a brand new EIN.
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