LLC EIN Number: What Is It & How to Get One?

Delina Chantel Yasmeh
Published by Delina Chantel Yasmeh | Author
Last updated: February 5, 2024
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Once your limited liability company has been registered, you will learn that an EIN, or Employer Identification Number, is necessary to operate the business.

As a Mergers and Acquisitions specialist, I learned that obtaining an EIN offers benefits that will give your company a working advantage.

Together with our team of legal experts, we’ll provide a comprehensive guide which covers everything you need to know about an EIN application and the advantages of obtaining one.

Quick Summary:

  • An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a unique nine-digit taxpayer identification number assigned by the IRS to identify business entities operating in the United States.
  • An EIN is needed to file taxes, open bank accounts, hire employees, and enter into a transaction. Just like a social security number is for residents, an EIN is for businesses.
  • The responsible party must be an individual and not an entity.
  • In my experience, applying for an EIN online is the quickest and most convenient way, since you get your confirmation right away.

What Is an LLC EIN Number?

Man reviewing and checking his answered forms

An LLC EIN is an Employer Identification Number assigned by the IRS to identify limited liability companies and track tax liabilities and payments.

A limited liability company is under the obligation to file tax returns, no matter if it chooses to be taxed as a partnership, or corporation.

Even if you own a single-member LLC or a multi-member LLC with employees, you will need a federal tax ID.

If you are not sure whether you should apply for the EIN, I encourage you to visit the IRS website for a detailed list of business entities that need one.

Taxes are the lifeblood of government and no taxpayer should be permitted to escape the payment of his just share of the burden of contributing thereto. – Arthur Vanderbilt, Former Chief Justice and Judicial Reformer

How to Get an Ein for LLC?

Comparing two different documents

You can get an EIN for an LLC online, by fax, or regular mail for free [1].

I always inform clients that the quickest way to obtain an EIN for their LLC is to visit the IRS website and apply online by following these steps: 

  • Determine your business eligibility: Identify the type of business entity applying for an EIN.
  • Identify the responsible party: Provide the name and SSN of the responsible party, which refers to an owner, member, or manager, applying on behalf of the LLC.
  • Complete the application: Provide all the relevant information of your LLC including its name, address, and start date.
  • Submit the application: Submit the completed application and receive your EIN confirmation immediately.

To apply for an EIN by fax, you will need to fill in Form SS-4, available on the IRS website. The completed form and all required documents should be sent to a fax number (855) 641-6935.

You can receive your company's EIN within four business days.

Regular mail is the third option to consider when applying for a company's EIN. You will need to fill in Form SS-4 and send it via postal service along with all required documents.

Send your mail to Internal Revenue Service, Attn: EIN Operation, Cincinnati, OH 45999.

Applications by mail have a 4-week turnaround time average.

Who Can Apply for an EIN?

Two person applying and answering forms

Any form of business entity can apply for an EIN as long as the IRS classifies the company to be eligible.

The business entity needs to designate a responsible party to apply in behalf of the company.

The responsible party refers to a manager, owner, or member of the company or a corporate officer if you own a corporation (C or S corporation).

The following individuals can also apply for a business's EIN:

  • Limited Liability Companies
  • A sole proprietor
  • Partners in a partnership
  • Shareholders in a corporation
  • An authorized individual on behalf of a nonprofit organization or estate

The EIN is free to apply for and can be applied online, by mail, or by fax.

You will need some general information about your company, such as the business name, address, and contact information.

What Can You Do With an EIN?

A couple having problems because of not having LLC EIN

With an EIN, you can file taxes, obtain licenses and permits, open a business bank account, hire employees, and add credibility to your company. The primary benefit of obtaining one is being able to operate your LLC legally.

The Internal Revenue Service requires all types of businesses to obtain an EIN for filing taxes. Failure to do so will result in fines and penalties for noncompliance.

Multi-member LLCs need to use an EIN while a single-member LLC can use their Social Security Number (SSN) instead.

Getting an EIN allows you to open a business bank account to keep your personal assets legally separated from company finances.

That’s why I encourage clients to do so to avoid the risk of piercing the corporate veil and losing limited liability protection.

Financial institutions and credit agencies require an EIN from limited liability companies before they approve a business loan.

Lastly, potential investors and clients prefer working with companies that are tax compliant and operate legally in all respects.

How to Perform an EIN Number Lookup?

Woman looking up something on her laptop

To perform an EIN lookup you can search for it by name, city, or state.

Your previously filed tax return, business credit report, checks for business loans, or bank statements are good places to start.

The quickest method I use to confirm and look for an EIN is through the "EIN Verification Service" on the IRS website [2].

Contacting the IRS directly can also help you confirm an EIN. You can call the Business & Specialty Tax line Monday through Friday, from 07:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. EST.

This process requires an authorized representative's identification procedure. Call the IRS at (800) 829-4933, and the IRS representative will ask you for personal information over the phone [3].

Read More:

FAQs

How Can I Get a Copy of My EIN Confirmation Letter?

To get a copy of your EIN confirmation letter, you will need to contact the IRS and the Specialty Tax Line or apply for it by mail.

Is an EIN Public Record?

An EIN is public record because it is associated with the company name and the information is made available to promote transparency within businesses.

How Many EINs Can You Have?

You can have one EIN per business entity, including corporations, LLCs, and partnerships. Each business must obtain its own EIN. Sole proprietors without employees can use their social security number for business, but others must have a separate EIN for tax filing and employment tax purposes.

LLC and EIN Number

The process of obtaining an EIN and understanding how it affects your business finances can be complicated if you are new to the world of LLCs.

The EIN is not just a number assigned to your company; it's the backbone of your business.

It provides information about where you are in the world and what kind of organization you have set up for yourself.

When obtaining an EIN for a new LLC, quite a lot goes into getting this done right, so we recommend consulting Bizee (formerly Incfile) who can guide you through all steps necessary.

References:

  1. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/apply-for-an-employer-identification-number-ein-online
  2. https://www.chamberofcommerce.org/ein-lookup
  3. https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/lost-or-misplaced-your-ein

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