Federal Tax ID Numbers for Non-U.S. Citizens

By Devin Scott Tuesday, February 9, 2016

federal tax id numbers for non-us citizensEntrepreneurs from all over the world incorporate their companies in Delaware in order to take advantage of Delaware’s prestigious corporate law structure.

Each founder aspires to create the next great Delaware company, such as Facebook, Google, Uber or Twitter.

We love being a part of the entrepreneurial process—helping people form their companies, obtaining their Federal Tax ID Numbers for them and cheering them on as they start to achieve their goals.

People from all over the world inquire about obtaining a Federal Tax ID Number or EIN (Employer Identification Number) for their new businesses.

Some people think that because they do not have a Social Security Number, a U.S. address or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) that they cannot obtain an EIN.

This is not true. If you do not have a Social Security number, you are not disqualified from obtaining a Federal Tax ID Number.

How Does a Non-U.S. Citizen Obtain an EIN?

First, you will be required to fill out and submit an SS4 Form, just as any U.S. resident would. The address listed on the SS4 Form can be anywhere in the world. The IRS is only interested in knowing where the business is operating.

In order to obtain an EIN online, you will need a Social Security Number or U.S. address. However, the application for an EIN can be still mailed or faxed to the IRS if you do not meet these requirements. In this case, you will be required to provide a copy of the passport for the person listed as the responsible party. You can email a copy to us at ein@delawareinc.com.

Be very careful when applying for your EIN, as there are potential drawbacks to dealing with the IRS on your own.

EINs for non-US residentsIf the application is not prepared correctly or is transmitted illegibly, the IRS may fax you a letter of rejection. This letter of rejection can sometimes take weeks to receive; once it is received, you are welcome to reapply for the EIN, but you will have to start the process from the beginning.

Our dedicated team in the Filings Department will be responsible for making sure your SS4 application is prepared and filed correctly in order to ensure the timely approval of your Federal Tax ID Number.

If there are any problems, we will call the IRS to resolve the issue, thus saving you time and energy so you can concentrate on your new company.  

We can typically obtain an EIN for any international client in seven to twenty business days once we receive a signed SS4 form.

The responsible party controls, manages or directs the applicant’s entity and the distribution of its funds and assets. The responsible party for a corporation must be an actual person, but this person can be an officer of the corporation and he/she can live anywhere in the world.

The responsible party of an LLC can be a member or managing member from anywhere in the world. The responsible party simply signs the document and emails or faxes it back to us. We will follow up with the IRS on your behalf if the EIN is not received in a timely fashion. This can save you hours of frustration, since contacting the IRS can be a lesson in futility at times.  

If you would like to apply for a Federal Tax ID Number for a new or existing company, please call us, regardless of whether or not you have a U.S. Social Security number, ITIN or U.S. address. We can help alleviate the hassle of dealing with an often uncooperative and unfriendly IRS. Please call 1-800-345-2677, Ext. 6910.

*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.

More By Devin Scott

There are 33 comments left for Federal Tax ID Numbers for Non-U.S. Citizens

Mausam Bora said: Monday, June 11, 2018

HI, I am a resident of India & looking forward to expand my business & start in US. Could you please help me how to get it set up including an EIN, Company Set up with a virtual address & a bank account opening?

HBS Staff replied: Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Yes, we can. Why don't you give us a call at 1-800-345-2677 or live chat with us via our homepage and we can assist you.

Helmuth Billy said: Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Can I obtain a Tax ID number for an employee who is not a USA citizen and will be working for us in California. Can your service obtain the necessary Tax number so he can begin working here. We would like to get the number as soon as possible. He has applied on his own weeks ago and all we get from the IRS when we call is that it is "processing"

HBS Staff replied: Monday, June 11, 2018

Federal Tax ID Numbers, aka EINs, are for companies, not people.

Frank Peter said: Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Hello Sir. Am a Ghanaian and want to open dropshiping website that sell to Americans and other countries do i need EIN ? please help thank you.

HBS Staff replied: Tuesday, June 5, 2018

After forming a Delaware corporation or LLC, the next step is to obtain a Federal Tax ID Number (also known as an Employer Identification Number or EIN). Think of the EIN as the social security number for your company. It is a nine digit number that is issued by the IRS (for example, 01-2345678). Just as a social security number is important for U.S. citizens to have, the Federal Tax ID Number is necessary for an LLC or corporation to lawfully conduct business activities, especially if you're operating a business in the United States. All U.S. companies are required to have an EIN to open a U.S. bank account, obtain loans, hire employees and more.

If you have further questions, please feel free to call us at 1--800-345-2677 or LiveChat with us from our homepage.

Nitin Hariyani said: Thursday, May 24, 2018

Hi We live here in India and we sell on Amazon recently we started our own website how do i file w8-ben form and do i require EIN for that as we do not have SSN or ITIN. Kindly help on the same. Thank you

HBS Staff replied: Thursday, May 24, 2018

To register with a company like Amazon, your company will need to have an EIN; however, we cannot give an advice on whether you need an ITIN or not. You will need to consult with an accountant for that type of assistance.

MD GOLAM RABBI BASUNIA said: Saturday, May 19, 2018

i Have EIN no and use it open bank account at bank of America . now how can i get tax id against my EIN . let me know

HBS Staff replied: Monday, May 21, 2018

The EIN is the same as the Federal Tax ID Number.

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