How to Fill Out the SS4 Form for an LLC?│Line-by-Line Guide

Atty. Danya Shakfeh
Published by Atty. Danya Shakfeh | Author
Last updated: April 14, 2024
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The SS4 Form is required to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) with the IRS.

As a corporate attorney who helped entrepreneurs form LLCs across the United States, I understood the importance of obtaining an EIN as well as the process involved in acquiring one.

After consulting our team of tax experts, we'll provide a comprehensive guide on how to fill out the SS4 form for a limited liability company.

Quick Summary:

  • To fill out Form SS-4 for an LLC, you will need to provide the correct information about your business, including its legal name, mailing address, and type of entity. 
  • To complete the process, you need to send the completed form to the IRS via mail, fax, or online. Once you do this correctly, you should receive your Employer Identification Number (EIN) shortly afterward.
  • According to U.S. Census Bureau data, the substantial increase in business applications in 2021, reaching 5.4 million, underscores the necessity for new entities to secure an Employer Identification Number (EIN).
  • Even though a single-member LLC is not required to obtain an EIN, I advise business owners to apply for one since it is necessary to open a business bank account, hire employees, and avail of financial aid.

Fill out the SS4 Form for LLC

A close up shot of an SS4 document

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the significant figure of 450,078 EIN applications in January 2024 underscores the vast number of new businesses navigating annual tax regulation compliance [1].

This necessitates accurate submission of specific details through Form SS-4, essential for legal operations, illustrating the intertwined nature of business registration and regulatory adherence.

When completing Form SS-4, you must provide specific information, including the following:

Ensure that the name you've chosen for your business is correct and looks similar on this line as it does on your LLC Articles of Organization.

Line 2. Trade name of the business

Fill out the LLC business name or "doing business as" (DBA) name of the LLC if it operates under a different name.

Line 3. Executor, administrator, trustee, “care of” name

We had to put the full name of a person authorized to handle the company's legal issues, since we employed a third responsible party to file for the company's EIN.

Lines 4a–b. Mailing address

Enter the business address to which mail will be delivered. This should generally be the same address as used for the company's tax returns.

Lines 5a–b. Street address

If the company has a physical address (not its mailing address) that differs from those in lines 4a–b, fill it in. If both addresses are identical, leave lines 5a–b blank.)

Line 6. County and state where the principal business is located

Fill in the business county and state.

Lines 7a–b. Name of the responsible party

Enter the business's responsible party's complete name (including the first name, middle initial, and last name) and SSN, ITIN, or EIN.

The IRS states that the responsible party is the individual who must sign Form SS-4 [2].

Lines 8a–c. Limited Liability Company (LLC) information

Since my client's firm is an LLC, we had to provide the names of the members and other additional information about the company.

Line 9a. Type of business entity

Fill out this form and check only the box that indicates which type of entity your business is, such as LLC, Sole Proprietorship, Partnership, S Corporation, or Personal Service Corporation.

Filling out this Form SS-4 does not constitute a tax classification election for your LLC.

Line 10. Reason for applying

Indicate the primary reason for applying for an EIN. These can include opening a business bank account, hiring employees, or applying for loans.

Read our article for more information on how to get a Tax ID number for an LLC.

What is an EIN?

An paper about EIN

An EIN is a nine-digit tax ID number that is given to businesses by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for LLC tax filing and reporting purposes.

Given the record rise in business applications in 2021, reaching 5.4 million, securing an EIN becomes vital for new entities.

This number not only meets legal requirements but is also essential for banking needs and financial transactions, highlighting the importance of obtaining an EIN for burgeoning enterprises and their legal and financial undertakings.

If you do not have an EIN, you can obtain one by filing IRS Form SS-4 [3].

"For patriots like me, paying taxes gives a feeling of responsibility, of being part of the fabric of our country, of contributing to the common good."

- Joyce Marcel, Award-Winning Vermont Journalist

FAQs

Do Both Members of an LLC Need an EIN?

Both members of an LLC does not need an EIN since the number is assigned to a business and not the individual.

What Is the Difference Between a Federal Tax Identification Number and a Social Security Number?

The main difference between a Federal Tax Identification Number and a Social Security Number is their purpose. An EIN, obtained through Form SS-4, identifies a business for tax purposes, while a Social Security Number is used for personal tax identification.

When to File Form SS4?

File Form SS4 4 to 5 weeks before you need the EIN.


References:

  1. https://www.census.gov/econ/bfs/pdf/bfs_current.pdf
  2. https://www.irs.gov/forms-pubs/about-form-ss-4
  3. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/employer-id-numbers

About The Author

Author
Atty. Danya Shakfeh, with over ten years of experience as a corporate attorney, leads Motiva Law, offering strategic legal advice to entrepreneurs. She is skilled at transforming complex legal concepts into clear strategies, allowing clients to pursue their goals. A "Rising Star" by Super Lawyers and an alumna of Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law, Danya is distinguished in business law.
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Growth & Transition Advisor
LJ Viveros has 40 years of experience in founding and scaling businesses, including a significant sale to Logitech. He has led Market Solutions LLC since 1999, focusing on strategic transitions for global brands. A graduate of Saint Mary’s College in Communications, LJ is also a distinguished Matsushita Executive alumnus.
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