For those of you who did not know, an ITIN number is extremely essential without which you cannot file your federal income tax returns. Therefore, if you are required to pay your income taxes, but do not have a social security number, you will have to get an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. While this number makes you eligible for paying your taxes, it cannot be used for identification purposes or for the purpose of seeking a job.
How ITINs Are Different From Social Security Numbers
People with an ITIN number cannot get access to the various tax benefits and the benefits provided to the citizens of the country. For instance, ITIN holders are not eligible for the social security benefits or Earned Income Tax Credit. ITINs also do not provide the holders with the immigration benefits nor does it provide authorization to work within the country.
Applying For ITIN
You can easily apply for an ITIN number by filling out an application form accurately. Along with this form, you will also be required to submit documents that verify your foreign status or identity and other supporting documents. In case a person has difficulty filling out those forms, taxpayer assistance centers and the ITS acceptance agents are always there to help and guide the applicants through the process.
Other Purposes Of ITIN
Opening A Bank Account
With the help of an ITIN number, you can open up a bank account (interest bearing). Here, you can make use of your ITIN numbers as identity in opening up your interest bearing accounts.
Getting A Driver’s License
Some of the states let people who have an ITIN number instead of a social security number to use it and get a driver’s permit, license, or a state identification card.
Is ITIN a way for the United States government to keep track of illegal immigrants?
The ITIN number is simply a means with which an individual who does not have a social security number can pay their taxes. Whether they are in the country on an illegal or a legal basis, the entire process is conducted so that the tax payments are facilitated. The IRS takes great care to make sure all of the information shared with them by the applicants remains private. They are also officially not allowed to disclose such information to individuals or even government agencies except for giving this information to the Treasure Department of the country so that further investigations and processes can be carried out.
If you still require more information on the ITIN number, or are looking to apply for one but o not know how, then feel free to contact us. We would be more than happy to help you out and answer any of the questions that you might have. It is always best to clear out all your confusions beforehand so that you do not face any issues while the actual process is being carried out. You also have access to professional help at all times.
ITIN- Understand the Application Process
ITIN number is an Individual Tax Identification Number but what exactly is the use of this 9 digit number?
According to Wikipedia, an “Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) is a United States tax processing number issued by the Internal Revenue Service. The IRS issues ITINs to individuals who are required to have a taxpayer identification number but who do not have, and are not eligible to obtain, a Social Security Number.”
It doesn’t really matter if an individual is a resident or nonresident, both can use an ITIN equally. Because it is not your immigration status that counts, it’s the federal tax return and payment responsibilities. Also that ITIN is strictly used for federal tax purposes only and the benefits attached to a SSN are not attached to an ITIN.
An individual who is at least 18 can apply for an ITIN. Individuals who are not eligible for the SSN must apply for ITIN as soon as possible. There are two possible ways to approach the IRS to issue you an ITIN. You can either do it in person or hire a professional. CCA (Certified Acceptance Agents) are professionals that provide assistance to individuals who have less knowledge regarding the whole application process or individuals who are extremely busy to do it themselves.
Doing it Yourself
If you think you understand the procedure and you’re comfortable doing it on your own, then you should. The very first thing you need to do is fill out a W-7 form. That’s the ITIN number application form and you can get it from the IRS office or the distribution centre. Ask them what else they need along with the W-7 form.
In general what you are going to need is two documents (original copies) that proof your identity. This could be your passport, driver’s license, birth certificate, identity card etc. The next thing you do is get them certified by the issuing agency. This is the most important part and will require a little more of your time and energy.
After when you’re done with these steps, you should sign the form and mail (not electronically) it along with identity documents to the respective address. It will almost take 6 weeks for IRS to issue you an ITIN. You can call at the toll free number is 1-800-829-1040 whenever you want. If you need help during the application process or you want an update on your ITIN application status, full assistance will be provided to you form the IRS (or the IRS taxpayer assistance centers).
If you’re not doing it in-person, what you can do is get an agent to walk you through. These acceptance agents are authorized by IRS and they’re highly reliable. They usually charge some amount for the services they provide but sometimes they do it for free too.
Your agent will give you complete list of things he requires from you for the process to begin. All you have to do is hand them over. Yes, you don’t have to get the documents certified because that’s what your agent is responsible for. If your agent is satisfied with the documents, rest assured you will get your ITIN safe and sound. So whether it’s your tax return or an accuracy certificate, these authorized professionals are ready to help you out.
It’s totally up to you whether you hire an agent or file an application yourself. As long as the documents are valid and are certified there’s nothing that can go wrong. Just make sure you keep the due dates in check, follow up your application status and don’t break law in any way. Do it right!
New Guidelines for ITIN Number Acceptance Agents
An ITIN Number Acceptance Agent is any individual, business or firm which is authorized by the Internal Revenue Service to review documents and applications for those applying for an ITIN Number. The role of an Acceptance Agent is mainly that of a facilitator; the agent is required to review and forward applications to the Internal Revenue Service if they are deemed complete and appropriate.
Role of Acceptance Agents
The Internal Revenue Service has specified certain individuals, financial institutions and accounting firms who are competent to verify ad review documents submitted by those applying for an ITIN Number. Because of the agents’ involvement in the tax community, they play a significant role in determining which applicants are eligible for ITINs. Only if an individual is not eligible for a Social Security Number his or her application for ITIN Number is further processed. The supplemental documents are then reviewed by the Acceptance Agent and forwarded to the Internal Revenue Service for further processing.
In order to uphold the integrity of the tax system in the US, a set of new guidelines governing Acceptance Agents has been introduced, effective from 2013. These guidelines are introduced to ensure that only qualified individuals and institutions are authorized to review documents. The guidelines also aim to standardize the process by establishing a stringent criterion for all those who can qualify as Acceptance Agents. A quick review of the latest guidelines for Acceptance Agents is provided below:
New Guidelines for Acceptance Agents
- As of 2013, Certified Acceptance Agents will be allowed to review certain documents submitted by those applying for an ITIN Number. Previously, all documents were required to be sent to the Internal Revenue Service for review and verification. However, this was quite hard, particularly for those residing outside the US. To facilitate such applicants, Internal Revenue service has now allowed Acceptance Agents to review certain applications and forward only the copies, and not the originals, to the IRS. This not only saves time but also avoids the hassle of sending originals to the IRS.
- Now all Acceptance Agents are required to obtain Forensic Document Training. This change is made to ensure that the Acceptance Agents have the necessary skills to check the authenticity of the documents submitted to support ITIN Number
- Only those certified under Circular 230 would be authorized to act as Acceptance Agents. This involves Acceptance Agents to register with Return Preparer’s Office to ensure that greater due diligence and compliance is observed in the processing of ITIN Number
- Stringent compliance rules will be observed by the Internal Revenue Service with which the Acceptance Agents are expected to comply. This involves their cooperation in correspondence and physical reviews, and compliance checks. Acceptance Agents are also required to produce information as and when demanded by the Accountability Office and Treasury Inspector for Tax Administration for verification purposes. The general idea is to safeguard the ITIN Number process from any legal malpractice and to uphold the integrity of the tax system.
If you want to apply for an, Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, or ITIN tax number and have any other questions, please feel free to contact us at 888-509-3616. If you have any suggestions please share those with us as well. Freedomtax ITIN Number has a professional team of IRS Certifying Acceptance Agents, and tax accounting professionals with more than 16 years of experience, helping immigrants with their ITIN application. Freedomtax can also help immigrant entrepreneurs incorporate a business in the USA. Freedomtax ITIN Tax Number Online services provides Quality, Professional Service with a Family Feel.