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Tax Identification Numbers

Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN), also known as Tax Identification Number (TIN)

A FEIN is a nine-digit number assigned by the IRS. The IRS uses the number to identify business taxpayers who are required to file various tax returns. FEINs are used by employers, sole proprietors, partnerships, corporations, non-profit organizations, trusts, states of decedents, government agencies, certain individuals and other business entities.

Generally, you will need a FEIN if you answer “Yes” to any of the following questions:

  • Do you have employees?
  • Do you operate your business as a corporation LLC or a partnership?
  • Do you file any of these tax returns: Employment, Excise, or Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms?
  • Do you withhold taxes on income, other than wages, paid to a nonresident alien?
  • Do you have a Keogh plan (a tax-deferred pension account)?
  • Are you involved with any of the following types of organizations:
  • Trusts (except certain grantor-owned revocable trusts)?
  • IRAs?
  • Exempt Organizations?
  • Estates?
  • Real Estate Mortgage?
  • Investment Conduits?
  • Non-profit Organizations?
  • Farmer’s Cooperatives?
  • Plan Administrators?

For more specific information about whether or not you are required to obtain a FEIN, you should refer to IRS Publication 1635.You can obtain a copy of IRS Pub.1635 online at www.irs.gov.

The quickest and easiest way to apply for your FEIN is on the Internet at www.brc.dc.gov (select “Start a Business”). You may also fill out a copy of IRS Form SS-4 (Application for Federal Employer Identification Number) and apply by phone, fax or mail. This form is available at the IRS and Social Security Administration offices, or you can request one by calling 1.800.829.4933.

You can also obtain a copy of IRS Form SS-4 online at www.irs.gov or complete the application and mail it to the service center for the District of Columbia at the following address:

IRS 1040
ATTN: FEIN Operations
Waverly Avenue
Holtsville, New York 11742

DC Business Tax Identification Number

The FR-500 is a DC Combined Business Tax Registration document used to provide information on ownership, location and type of business, which is needed to make a determination of an employing unit’s liability to pay unemployment taxes.

Once you complete and turn it in to the Office of Tax and Revenue (OTR), you will be provided with a notice of business tax registration, which will indicate your tax obligations and filing frequency. It will also be the basis for your unemployment tax registration with the DC Department of Employment Services (DOES).

Tax forms can be accessed online at www.cfo.dc.gov/otr. For more information call the Office of Tax and Revenue at 202.727.4829.

If you are an employer with one or more employees performing services within the District of Columbia, you are liable for unemployment taxes under the District of Columbia Unemployment Compensation Act. This includes services performed on a part-time or temporary basis. Employers of household help are also liable if they pay at least $500 in aggregate wages in any calendar quarter for such help.

Persons considered household employees include chauffeurs, cooks, gardeners, nurses, maids and baby-sitters who are at least 18 years of age. Employers with one or more employees performing services within the District of Columbia, as described in the preceding paragraph, must complete part VI of the Combined Registration Application (FR-500).

If the form is completed online at the Office of Tax and Revenue’s website www.cfo.dc.gov/otr, part IV will automatically be forwarded to the DC Department of Employment Services. You will be contacted by the DOES if necessary and provided with a determination of tax liability. If FR-500 is not completed online, part IV should be submitted to the DOES, Office of Unemployment Compensation, Tax Division, 609 H Street, NE, 3rd floor,Washington, DC 20002.

The withholding and submission of employer withholding tax is optional for household employees. If you chose to withhold, you should complete the Combined Registration Application (FR-500), as mentioned above.