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If you are a Non-Resident Expatriate or a Foreign Company — then ITIN’s, W-8’s and EIN’s are your tools to navigate through your US tax obligations seamlessly.
As your Australian-based certified acceptance agents, we will assist you in getting your forms in order, as well as advise and assist in the completion of W-8BEN forms for tax withholding purposes.
What is an ITIN?
An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) is a tax processing number issued by the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS). If you are not located in the US – the easiest way to obtain an ITIN is to apply for an ITIN with a certifying agent.
Applicants who do not wish to – or are unable to mail their original documents to the IRS may take them, in person to a TAC or Certified Acceptance Agent to have the documents verified and immediately returned to them.
How can I know if I am eligible to apply for ITIN?
In order to qualify for an ITIN, you must fall into one of the following categories:
→ You do not have an SSN (social security number) and are not eligible to obtain one
→ You have been asked to furnish a federal tax identification number or file a federal tax return
→ You are in one of the following categories:
- You are a non-resident alien who is required to file a US tax return
- You are a US resident alien who is (based on days present in the United States) filing a US tax return
- You are the dependent or spouse of a US citizen/resident alien
- You are the dependent or spouse of a non-resident alien visa holder
- You are a non-resident alien claiming a tax treaty benefit
- You are a non-resident alien student, professor or researcher filing a US tax return or claiming an exception
Book your consultation to receive assistance with your ITIN application from USTaxCentral:
With Certified Acceptance Agents at your disposal, you will receive the help you need with your ITIN application, making the process faster and simpler.
Our services are personalised in order to help you comply with the US tax laws. Your verified ITIN number will provide a means to efficiently process and account for tax returns and payments for those not eligible for Social Security Numbers. They are issued regardless of immigration status, because both resident and non-resident aliens may have a US filing or reporting requirement under the Internal Revenue Code. ITINs do not serve any purpose other than federal tax reporting.
An ITIN does not:
→ Authorize you to work within the US
→ Provide eligibility for Social Security benefits
→ Qualify a dependent for Earned Income Tax Credit Purposes
When should I renew my ITIN number?
If you receive notice that you, your spouse, or your dependent’s ITIN is scheduled to expire and you will be filing a tax return or claim for refund in 2021, you should begin the renewal process as soon as possible. Taxpayers whose ITINs are scheduled to expire may renew their ITIN immediately.
You do not have to wait for the IRS to send a notice of expiration if your middle digits have been identified for expiration by the IRS.
How can I renew my ITIN number?
To renew an expiring ITIN, you must submit a completed W-7 Form Application for an IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, along with valid original or certified copies (by the issuing agency) identification documents and any other required attachments. Applicants must also select the appropriate reason for needing the ITIN, as outlined in the Form W-7/W-7(SP) instructions.
No tax return is required for a renewal application.
Please note that spouses and dependents cannot renew in advance. They may renew their ITIN only when filing an individual tax return, or if someone else files an individual income tax return on their behalf, such as a dependent parent who qualifies the primary taxpayer to claim head of household filing status.
W-8 forms are Internal Revenue Service (IRS) forms that foreign individuals and businesses must file to verify their country of residence for tax purposes and certify that they qualify for a lower rate of tax withholding.
W-8BEN is used by foreign individuals who acquire various types of income from US sources. If you are a non-US national who does business in the US, Form W-8BEN will establish your foreign status and allow you to claim tax exemption, or reduced tax rates on US-sourced income. The US has an income tax treaty in place and Form W-8BEN will establish your eligibility of treaty benefits.
The purpose of the form is to establish:
• That the individual in question is the beneficial owner of the income connected to Form W-8BEN.
• That the individual is a foreign person (technically a non-resident alien) and not a US citizen.
• That the individual is eligible for a reduced rate of tax withholding, or is exempt entirely, due to an income tax treaty between his home country and the United States.
Only non-US persons should use Form W-8BEN.
W-8BEN-E is an important tax document which allows businesses operating outside of the US to claim tax exemption on US-sourced income. The official document title is ‘Certificate of Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting (Entities).’
Under US tax regulations, a mandatory amount of 30% must be withheld by any company paying a foreign entity conducting business within the US.
However – if the foreign company is based in a country which has a tax treaty with the US, it may fill out and submit Form W-8BEN-E to be exempted from the 30% withholding (and other applicable American tax laws).
For the W-8ECI, generally, a foreign national is subject to US tax on it’s US-source income. Most types of US-source income received by a foreign national are subject to US tax of 30%. A reduced rate, including exemption, may apply if there is a tax treaty between the foreign person’s country of residence and the US.
In addition, the W-8ECI form is required by your management company. Without this form in their files, they are required by US federal law to withhold 30% of your rental income and pay that amount to IRS.
Form W-8EXP has the official name of “Certificate of Foreign Government or Other Foreign Organization for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting”. This is used by certain payees in order to claim a reduction or exclusion from tax withholding.
• Foreign governments
• Tax-exempt organizations
• Governments of a US possession or foreign central banks of issue
The purpose of the W-8IMY form is to certify that a person or business received withholdable payments on behalf of a foreigner or as a flow-through entity.
Examples of entities who must file a W-8IMY include:
• Foreign nationals, or a foreign branch of a US national, who is certifying that they are a qualified intermediary (QI) not acting on it’s own account and will provide a withholding statement required under chapters three and four of the IRS Code
• US branches that are serving in the role of an intermediary and wish either to certify their treatment as a US national under tax law or document the receipt of payments for which they will furnish a withholding statement; and
• Flow-through entities who wish to claim tax benefits under a treaty or certify that they will provide a withholding statement, as required.
Get Help with US Tax Central:
Filling out W-8 forms can be confusing and overwhelming for most people. Let us save you time with guided instructions that will insure a smooth filling process with our certified agents.
The Employer Identification Number (EIN), also known as the Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) or the Federal Tax Identification Number, is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to business entities operating in the United States for the purposes of identification.
Why do I need an EIN number?
The IRS uses the EIN to identify the taxpayer. EINs must be used by business entities: corporations, partnerships, and limited liability companies.
Among the benefits you would have with an EIN number:
• Identity protection
• Business taxes
• Separation of personal and business finances
• Business growth
• Establish credit
• Apply for credit, open business accounts, hire US workers
• Plan for retirement
• Protection of assets from business losses
Every organization must have an employer identification number (EIN), even if it will not have employees. The EIN is a unique number that identifies the organization to the Internal Revenue Service.
How to get an EIN number?
To get the EIN number from outside the US, you need to sit through a phone call of at least an hour, answering questions related to your organization. This is why it is highly recommended to hire a Third Party Designee who has been authorised to act on behalf of the business. They will also need to be able to answer questions related to Form SS-4 during office hours.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I obtain an ITIN number fast?
Getting an ITIN number is one of the simplest and fastest processes compared to any other tax related topic within the IRS. However, this depends on how you choose to apply for it and the accuracy of the documents you submit. Since there is a high application rejection rate, an acceptance agent can be an asset in ensuring a successful application with speed and accuracy.
When should I apply for an ITIN number?
You can apply for your ITIN number with the W-7 Form during the regular tax season between January and April. Alternatively, you can apply at any time you have a reporting requirement.
How do I obtain my ITIN number?
To obtain an ITIN, you must complete IRS Form W-7 — IRS Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. The W-7 requires documentation substantiating foreign/alien status and true identity for each individual.
You can choose to mail the documentation by courier, along with the completed W-7 form, to the address shown within the W-7 Instructions, present it at IRS walk-in offices, or process your application through an Acceptance Agent authorized by the IRS.
What is an Acceptance Agent?
Acceptance Agents are entities (colleges, financial institutions, accounting firms, for example) who are authorized by the IRS to assist applicants in obtaining ITINs. They review the applicant’s documentation and forward the completed W-7 form to the IRS for processing.
Can I apply for ITIN online?
Applications are not currently accepted electronically. However — US residents and non-resident aliens, as well as their dependents or spouses, can fill out all the necessary paperwork for an ITIN number online. Applications are accepted by mail or in person at the IRS anytime you need an ITIN number throughout the year.
Applying for an ITIN in-person using the services of an IRS-authorized Certifying Acceptance Agent will prevent you from having to mail your proof of identity and foreign status documents.
How much does it cost to apply for an ITIN?
The IRS does not charge a fee to apply for an ITIN. However, filing out the form, and the procedures to comply with proper identification and issuance can be time consuming. Agents have different backgrounds and knowledge about filling ITIN Applications in a legal and relatable way. For this reason, there is no particular fixed cost for the ITIN application.
Who is eligible for ITIN?
In order to be eligible for ITIN, you must fall into one of the following categories:
- Non-resident alien who is required to file a US tax return.
- US resident alien who is (based on days present in the US) filing a US tax return.
- Dependent or spouse of a US citizen/resident alien.
- Dependent or spouse of a non-resident alien visa holder such as H4 visa holder.
- Non-resident alien claiming a tax treaty benefit.
- Non-resident alien student, professor or researcher filing a US tax return or claiming an exception.
You can have an interview or a test from the IRS website to check your eligibility:
What should I do if I’m notified that my ITIN will expire?
If you have received notice that you, your spouse, or your dependent’s ITIN is scheduled to expire, and you will be filing a tax return or claim for refund in 2021, you should begin the renewal process as soon as possible. If you receive the CP-48 Notice after you have submitted your W-7 form to renew your ITIN, you may disregard the notice. No additional action is required. You should not renew an ITIN if the ITIN holder has or is qualified to get a social security number (SSN).
Can I apply for an ITIN without a tax return?
If you’re attempting to apply for an ITIN without a federal tax return, it’s important to provide proof to support your claim for an exemption. Most of the time this comes in the form of duly signed letters from your employer, bank, or mortgage holder, but other situations call for legal documents such as employment contracts or business incorporation paperwork. You’ll find a detailed list of exemption criteria and acceptable evidence in the official W-7 form instructions from the IRS.
What documents do you need for an ITIN?
The IRS has streamlined the number of documents the agency accepts as proof of identity and foreign status to obtain an ITIN. There are 13 acceptable documents. Each document must be current and contain an expiration date. The IRS will accept documents issued within 12 months of the application if no expiration date is normally available. Documents must also show your name and photograph, and support your claim of foreign status. Below is the list of the only acceptable documents:
- Passport. A passport is the only document that proves both identity and foreign status. For dependents, the passport must have a date of entry to be a stand-alone document, unless the dependent is from the Military Overseas. If a passport is submitted, a combination of two or more documents must be submitted to meet the document requirements.
- National identification card. This must show your photo, name, current address, date of birth, and expiration date.
- US driver’s license
- Civil birth certificate This is required for dependents under 18 years of age.
- Foreign driver’s license
- US state identification card
- Foreign voter’s registration card
- US military identification card
- Foreign military identification card
- US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) photo identification
- Medical records. This is for dependents below the age of 6 years.
- School records. this is for dependents below the age of 14, years and below the age of 18 years if the dependant is a student.
Can I apply for ITIN anytime?
You can apply for an ITIN at any time during the year when you have a filing or reporting requirement. At a minimum, you should complete the W-7 form when you are ready to file your federal income tax return by the return’s prescribed due date. If the tax return you attach to the W-7 form is filed after the return’s due date, you may owe interest and/or penalties.
How long does it take to rescind ITIN?
Under normal circumstances, this type of request can be expected to take 8-12 weeks and you could track it by calling the IRS service centre. Currently, since the pandemic started, the IRS call centres are closed and staffing levels are drastically reduced so you can expect processing time to be increased dramatically. However, exactly how long it may take is still not specified.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a W8 used for?
In a nutshell, a W 8 form is used by foreign businesses and non-resident aliens earning income from U.S. sources. Its purpose is mainly to let brokers and mutual fund companies know that the person or company in question is not subject to the usual tax withholding from investment income.
Is a W8 required?
The W8 Form: A Requirement for Non-US Companies Selling Services to US Entities. If you are a non-US selling services to US entities, these US entities will most likely ask you to fill out a W8 form?
Why do I need to complete a W-8BEN-E form?
The W-8BEN-E form is used by payers of US income. All US payers are required to determine whether the recipient is a US entity or a foreign entity. The form is a record in case they are audited by the IRS and ensures the correct amount of US tax withholding is made.
How long is W-8BEN valid for?
All clients who want to trade US shares need to submit a W-8BEN. Once you’ve submitted your form, it’s valid for three calendar years.
Who needs to fill out a W-8?
You must provide the W-8BEN form personally or hire a certified third party for the filling process. You must give Form W-8BEN to the withholding agent or payer if you are a non-resident alien who is the beneficial owner of an amount subject to withholding, or if you are an account holder of an FFI documenting yourself as a nonresident alien.
Is W8 form mandatory?
All non-US persons and entities are required to complete an IRS Form W-8 to certify your country of tax residence and to establish whether you qualify for a reduced rate of withholding when opening an account.
What is the difference between W-8BEN and W-8BEN-E?
Form W-8BEN is used by foreign individuals who receive nonbusiness income in the United States, whereas W-8BEN-E is used by foreign entities who receive this type of income.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does Ein stand for?
One of the key responsibilities for many new businesses or businesses that are restructuring is obtaining an Employer Identification Number, or EIN, from the IRS. An EIN is a unique nine-digit number that identifies your business for tax purposes.
How do I find my EIN number?
You can locate your EIN on your confirmation letter from the IRS, old tax returns, old business loan applications, your business credit report, or payroll paperwork. You can also call the IRS to look up your federal tax ID number. If you need to locate another company’s EIN, you can start by asking the company.
Is EIN the same as Tax ID?
A Federal Tax Identification Number, also known as a “95 Number”, “E.I.N. Number,” or “Tax I.D. Number”, all refer to the nine-digit number issued by the IRS. They are different names for the same number.
Who needs an EIN?
The IRS uses the EIN to identify the taxpayer. EINs must be used by business entities–corporations, partnerships, and limited liability companies. However, most sole proprietors don’t need to obtain an EIN and can use their Social Security numbers instead. Even so, you may want to obtain an EIN anyway.
Can I get an EIN without a business?
Yes, you can! It is legal to apply for an EIN when you don’t have a business license and don’t have any employees.
When should I apply for Ein?
You should apply for an EIN early enough to have your number when you need to file a return or make a deposit. You can get an EIN immediately by applying online. International applicants must call!
Does it cost money to get an EIN?
Applying for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a free service offered by the Internal Revenue Service. However, you can hire someone else to apply on your behalf.
Can I use my EIN to buy a car?
You cannot use an EIN to purchase a vehicle, unless that vehicle is used for your business. Your EIN is used for business-only transactions. Therefore, you could use this number to apply for a loan for fleet vehicles or company cars.