An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number is a United States tax identifying number issued to the individuals who are supposed to pay the federal taxes but do not possess a Social Security Number. They use this number as a legal proof to open bank accounts, apply for loans and process all the other financial activities. It is a nine digit number with a range of 70 to 88 in the fourth and fifth digits and does not serve the authorization to work or qualify dependents for the earned income tax credit purposes.
ITIN is issued regardless of immigration status to both the resident and nonresident alien immigrants who are responsible for the tax reportings. To detail it further all the non resident aliens willing to claim joint tax returns with a spouse, the spouse being a resident of the US or an alien individual residing on a temporary visa require an ITIN. Therefore, it is mandatory for all such unauthorized individuals who are claimed as dependents on another person’s US tax returns or for the non resident students and scholars entitled for the tax return filing requirements. A person in no case can have both the SSN and ITIN.
One can obtain an ITIN by submitting the W7 form which they can collect from the nearest social security office. The form should include a record of all the biographical information along with supporting original documents like voter cards, civil birth certificates, US or foreign driving license, registration cards, military identification cards, medical records, school records, passport and visa attached to the form. Applicants can submit two of the mentioned documents with a valid federal income tax return. The supplementary documents are returned to them within sixty days of the receipt and processing of the form. The ITIN issued to a person expires after using it for three consecutive years. In all such cases the individuals can reapply to get it renewed.
Since the applicants provide the IRS with a great amount of personal information, privacy is necessary for the success of the program. Expanding the information sharing beyond this would need the execution of new laws and procedures. Individuals willing to obtain an ITIN can also take the help of Acceptance Agent Services who are business entities certified by the Internal Revenue Service. These agents help the immigrants from getting their applications rejected by reviewing the authenticity of the documents submitted. They also issue a certificate of accuracy after successfully submitting the form to the respective IRS office on behalf of the applicants thus preventing them from mailing the original certificates. With them the applicants can execute their ITIN applications much faster than the applicants applying directly.
The ITIN program was created in order to bring the millions of foreign nationals under the federal tax laws. They use the Individual Taxpayer Identification Number to determine that how long he or she had been residing in the US and having a tax return filed. ITIN holders are also eligible for the CTC or the Child Tax Credit.