Discover Your Federal Tax ID Number: A Step-by-Step Guide

Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr

Starting a new business or managing an existing one requires understanding various legal and financial aspects. One such essential aspect is the Federal Tax ID Number, also known as the Employer Identification Number (EIN). This guide will help you discover everything you need to know about your Federal Tax ID Number, updated to 2023.

What is a Federal Tax ID Number?

A Federal Tax Identification Number (EIN) is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It’s used to identify a business entity and is required for various business activities within the United States.

Why Do You Need an EIN?

An EIN is essential for:

  • Starting a new business
  • Hiring employees
  • Opening a business bank account
  • Applying for credit
  • Establishing your company’s identity with vendors and clients

How to Apply for an EIN

Determine Your Eligibility

Businesses located in the US or abroad can apply online, by mail, or fax.

Gather Required Information

You’ll need to provide basic company information such as:

  • Legal name of the entity
  • Physical address
  • Mailing contact person info (phone no, email)

Complete IRS Form SS4

This form asks questions about your business structure, such as whether it’s a sole proprietorship, LLC, S corp., or corporation, as well as size, date of formation, and type of activity.

Wait For Approval

Once submitted, the IRS processes your application within minutes and provides confirmation.

Start Using Your EIN

After obtaining your taxpayer identification number, you should report it on all financial transactions between companies.

Lost or Misplaced Your EIN?

If you’ve misplaced your EIN, you can:

  • Find the computer-generated notice issued by the IRS when you applied for your EIN.
  • Contact the bank or agency where you used your EIN.
  • Find a previously filed tax return for your existing entity where your EIN is notated.
  • Ask the IRS to search for your EIN by calling the Business & Specialty Tax Line at 800-829-4933.

Get Federal and State Tax ID Numbers

Get a Federal Tax ID Number

Your EIN is your federal tax ID. You need it to pay federal taxes, hire employees, open a bank account, and apply for business licenses and permits.

Get a State Tax ID Number

The need for a state tax ID number ties directly to whether your business must pay state taxes.

Additional Insights from the IRS

Apply for an EIN Online

The IRS offers an Interview-style online EIN application. You can download, save, and print your confirmation notice immediately upon completion.

Verify Your EIN

If you want to verify your EIN, see the Lost or Misplaced Your EIN page for instructions.

Daily Limitation of an Employer Identification Number

Effective May 21, 2012, the IRS limits EIN issuance to one per responsible party per day.

Change of Ownership or Structure

Generally, businesses need a new EIN when their ownership or structure has changed.


Acquiring your federal tax ID number is an essential step for any business or entity operating in the US. This guide provides a comprehensive understanding of the process, making it easy and efficient.


What is a federal tax ID number and why do I need one?

A federal tax ID number, also known as an Employer Identification Number (EIN), is a unique nine-digit identification number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to businesses registered in the United States for tax purposes.

How can I find out if my business already has an EIN?

You can check with the IRS directly by calling their Business & Specialty Tax Line at 800-829-4933.

How do I apply for a new EIN if my business doesn’t have one?

Apply online through the IRS website.