What is the difference between a TIN, a SSN, an ITIN and an EIN?
TIN vs SSN vs ITIN vs EIN
For business owners all of these identification numbers can be confusing, so we are going to break them down for you.
TIN – Taxpayer Identification Number
A Taxpayer Identification Number is an identification number used by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the administration of tax laws. A Social Security number is issued by the Social Security Administration (SSA) whereas all other TINs are issued by the IRS.
SSN – Social Security Number
A Social Security Number is for U.S. citizens and “authorized non-citizen residents.” An example of an authorized non-citizen resident would be a green card holder or a student in the U.S. on a Visa.
ITIN – Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number is for a resident with a foreign status. This includes undocumented aliens and non-resident aliens that conduct business in the U.S. An ITIN is only available to resident and non-resident aliens who are NOT eligible for U.S. employment and need the identification number for other tax purposes. You can identify an ITIN because it is a 9-digit number, beginning with the number “9” and is formatted like a SSN.
EIN – Employer Identification Number
An Employer Identification Number is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, and is used to identify a business entity. Generally, businesses need an EIN.
Employers are required to have their employees complete an I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification Form, which attests to the individual’s eligibility to work. You will find a PDF or paper version I-9 Form here – https://www.uscis.gov/i-9
Employers can verify the information given on the I-9 form by using E-Verify, https://www.e-verify.gov/. While it is not mandatory for employers in Delaware to use E-Verify, it is a useful tool to assist employers with verifying the identity and authorization of individuals seeking employment.
Businesses using subcontractors are required to have the subcontractor complete a Form W-9 and obtain a copy of their business license and liability insurance upon hiring. You can obtain a pdf copy of the Form W-9 here – https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw9.pdf