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New Corporate Transparency Act rule: File now

New Corporate Transparency Act rule: File now

Get financially compliant with an EIN

An employer identification number (EIN), also known as a federal tax identification number, is required by the IRS and used to file business taxes, hire employees, open a business bank account, and meet compliance requirements.

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Learn more about our guarantee

Why use LegalZoom to get an EIN?

Seamless application

Avoid having to navigate complicated IRS rules and processes on your own. We make it easy for you by filling out your EIN application, based on your answers to a few questions.

Effortless filing

Enjoy a more effortless, stress-free process. We’ll facilitate the filing of your EIN application directly with the IRS, so you don’t have to worry about meeting all the IRS requirements.

Verified completion

No need to manage the approval period with the IRS. We’ll handle the approval process and send you the official documentation, complete with your confirmed identification number.

Get started with your EIN

EIN (Federal Tax ID Number)


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EIN application filed directly with IRS

Confirmed identification number

Official documentation

100% accurate filing guarantee

How to get an EIN with LegalZoom

Tell us about your business

Answer a few basic questions online to give us the required business info.

We’ll fill out and file your EIN application

Using your business info, we’ll fill out an application for you and file it directly with the IRS.

You receive your EIN

Once your application is approved, we’ll send you official documentation with your confirmed identification number.

Start my EIN

Why does my business need an employer identification number?

Even if your particular business isn’t required to have an employer identification number, there are still important benefits to having one.

File business taxes and avoid tax penalties

An EIN helps organize business taxes separately from personal taxes, simplifying the process and avoiding late penalties or incorrect filings. Having an EIN also helps reduce the likelihood of an IRS audit, by demonstrating you actually have a business.

Hire employees

Having an EIN is required if you plan to hire employees. It allows you to withhold payroll taxes and report required employee information to the IRS.

Prevent identity theft

You’ll be able to use the EIN number instead of your Social Security number with clients or vendors. You can keep your personal and business finances separate, which helps prevent identity theft.

Establish business credit

Many banks require businesses to have an EIN to open a bank account. An EIN is also crucial for establishing a credit history and can help with getting business loans.

Start my EIN

Types of business entities that need an employer

identification number (EIN)

No matter what type of business you own, getting an EIN is important for financial

compliance, filing taxes, and protecting your privacy.

Business entity type

Is an EIN required?

LLC (limited liability company)

It depends. You need one for your LLC if it is any of the following:

Multi-member LLC

Single-member LLC with employees, or with plans to hire employees in the next 12 months

Single-member LLC being taxed as a corporation

Corporation or partnership

Yes. It’s required even if your corporation or partnership doesn’t have employees.

Sole proprietorship

It depends. You need one for your sole proprietorship if:

You have employees, or plan to hire employees in the next 12 months

You have a tax-deferred retirement plan for individuals or small businesses

You are required to file a Federal employment tax return, Excise tax return, or Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms tax return

Why get a federal tax ID number (EIN)?

Meet compliance requirements

An EIN is often legally required to avoid potential tax penalties. It may also be required for your federally mandated Beneficial Ownership Information Report.

Build credibility

Having an EIN shows you’re serious about your business, which helps boost credibility and build trust with vendors and partners.

Hire employees

An EIN can help you establish the financial infrastructure needed to hire employees and simplify the process of managing payroll.

What’s a federal tax identification number or EIN?

A federal tax ID number is a unique 9-digit number that’s assigned to a business or organization by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It identifies your business for tax purposes and is formatted as: XX-XXXXXXX.

This number is generally necessary to pay your employees, open a business bank account, withhold taxes, complete W-9 tax forms as an independent contractor, or pay taxes.

EINs are issued by the IRS and used on federal tax forms. Once your business has been assigned an EIN, it never expires and can never be reissued to another business.

Start my EIN

Why an EIN is crucial to your business

When it’s mandated by the IRS, you don’t have a choice. But even when it’s not required, an EIN makes it easier to do the following:

Avoid identity theft

An EIN helps keep your personal and business finances separate. It reserves your Social Security number for personal needs and helps keeps identity thieves from accessing your personal assets.

Apply for a business license

This varies by state, but many states require an EIN before you can be licensed to conduct business.

File a Beneficial Ownership Information Report

The federal government requires that businesses file a Beneficial Ownership Information Report (BOIR), which requires an EIN. 

Get a business bank account and loans

Many banks require a federal tax identification number to open a business bank account, which is generally required in order to apply for loans.

Hire employees

An EIN is absolutely required if you have employees, and you can’t set up your payroll system without one.

File your taxes

If you are required to have an EIN and don't have it before you file your taxes, you could open yourself up to all kinds of tax penalties.

Boost credibility

An EIN shows a formal commitment to your business and that it’s legitimate. It helps you build trust with vendors and partners, who may want to check your business credit before working with you.

Getting an EIN comes with all these benefits and virtually no drawbacks. It never expires or gets reassigned, even if you never use it.

Start my EIN

How to apply for an EIN for your corporation, LLC, or sole proprietorship

We make the application process easy for you with just basic info about your business as required by the IRS. This includes:

The names of the company owner, principal officer, partner, or trustor

Type of business (sole proprietorship, partnership, etc.)

Reason for applying (such as for a new business)

Date of business formation

Business industry

It’s mandatory that the business be located in the U.S. or a U.S. territory in order to be eligible to apply for a taxpayer identification number online.

Once you fill out the required information in our easy-to-use online form, we’ll handle the entire application process for you. We’ll send your EIN once it’s approved by the IRS.

Start my EIN

What’s the difference between filing taxes with a SSN vs. EIN?

SSN (Social Security number)

Generally only allowed for sole proprietorships and single-member LLCs with no employees

Leaves your personal info vulnerable to potential theft, since you’d be using your SSN for both business and personal taxes

May need to fill out paperwork explaining to the IRS why you don’t have an EIN

EIN (employer identification number)

Required for most businesses, especially if they have or plan to hire employees

Allows you to keep your business and personal finances separate, which protects your personal info

No extra paperwork required to explain to the IRS why you don’t have an EIN

Ready to start your EIN?

Start my EIN

Frequently asked questions

What our customers are saying

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