What Is Form SS-4?
Applying for a small business loan can be pretty nerve-wracking! What exactly is the Form SS-4 – better yet, how do you get yours?
When applying for a loan, it’s extremely important to fill out your documentation thoroughly and efficiently. But there are SO many forms to fill out. How do you know how each one affects your business?
One important form to get familiar with is the SS-4 form. Certain lenders will request a copy of this form as a part of the application process for your small business loan.
What is an EIN?
Form SS-4 is the form used by corporations to apply for an employer identification number or what you may recognize as an EIN (or Tax ID). This is a nine-digit number given to all employers, corporations, and individuals for tax filing purposes.
It’s basically what the IRS uses to identify your business. You will need this EIN number handy if you:
- open a bank account for business use
- apply for a business license
- Pay employees of your company
- need to acquire a business credit card
Even if you do not have employees, you may still need to fill out an SS-4. If you are a non-profit, a corporation, a church related organization, a trust, or an estate you also need an EIN.
Where’s My EIN?
A nine-digit number is easy to lose track of! Thankfully, the IRS has an easy online application for you to fill out. You can even sign the application electronically.
You can locate your EIN on your most current tax return for your business. The IRS Business and Speciality Line can be reached from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday through Friday.
What if I Don’t Know My EIN?
If you are a business who does not know their EIN, the IRS will need to ask you several business-related questions to gather your information strictly for security purposes. This information may include:
- Legal Business name
- Legal Business address
- Your position within the company (i.e. Founder or CEO)
Once that is complete, you will receive a copy of your EIN assignment letter. This should be used as verification of your business to prospective lenders. The EIN assignment letter will be sent to the business address on file. If your business has changed locations, please make sure this is updated.
You can also send in a hard copy if you do not want to complete the online application. If you complete the form successfully, your business should be able to use their EIN right away.
However, it could take 2 weeks for your EIN to be part of your permanent records with the IRS. If you are attempting to file an electronic return or payment, you will need to wait.
What is The Difference Between an EIN, TIN, and Federal Tax ID Number?
Nothing! These are all different names for the same exact number given to you by the IRS.
Error Code – Help Me?
Your application for an EIN may give you an “Error Code 101” message. This could mean there is something wrong with your application. More than likely, your business name closely resembles that of another business.
The IRS deals with businesses all over the country! Go through your application carefully to make sure there are no mistakes when filling out your business information.
How Do I Change My EIN?
There are a few reasons why you would need to change your employer identification number:
- Your Business Name Changed – You do not need to change your EIN if your business name has changed. Present the change on your business tax form upon filing.
- Your Business Address Changed – Please fill out Form 8822-B if your business address has changed, which is the IRS change of business address form.
- Your Business Entity Type Has Changed – If you change your business type, you will need to fill out Form 8832, or Entity Classification Election Form. If you are the owner of an LLC but want to be taxed like a corporation, you will need to file Form 8832.