Can you try your personal SSN to an EIN vs ITIN?

So I'm wanting to start my llc and when I went to apply for an EIN the irs site is asking me for my personal SSN, which I understand but I was also informed there's other ways to avoid using your personal ssn instead. So I'd like to know if I do need to tie my personal ssn to the new EIN I'm requesting or if I can apply for a ITIN to get the EIN. The reason why I'm reserved is because I'm not sure whether the business will succeed or not. I don't wish to tie up my personal SSN to anything really unless I don't have a choice. Any advice is deeply and greatly appreciated.


If you are a U.S. citizen and already have an SSN, you are not eligible to apply for a separate ITIN. When you register a new business for an EIN, the person completing the application is the responsible party for the LLC's EIN application. The responsible party can be either an individual or an existing business. As you've discovered, if you are personally applying for the EIN as the sole member of the LLC, you will have to provide your own SSN. Some new businesses opt to appoint an existing business as the responsible party. The existing business can complete the EIN application for the new LLC by providing its legal entity name and EIN. If you're concerned about the IRS having your SSN associated with the LLC, I would suggest this is a moot issue. The LLC's profits and losses are eventually going to be reported on your personal income tax return each year, so the IRS will know that you are the owner. Also, if you plan to open a bank account or apply for a credit card through the LLC, banks and credit card companies will generally always require an SSN from a responsible party. Banks are hesitant to open accounts and provide credit unless your personal information accompanies the application.

Answered 5 years ago

You would not “tie up” your SSN. The purpose is so that the Government can track your income. You must if you are the managing member of the LLC or officer attach your SSN when applying for an EIN. I would also caution you that you provide accurate information.

Answered 5 years ago

Here are a few options for getting an EIN without using your personal SSN:

1. Apply for an ITIN first before getting the EIN. As a non-resident, you can apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) using IRS Form W-7. Once you receive your ITIN, you can then use that instead of your SSN when applying for the EIN online or by mail.

2. Apply for the EIN by mail using Form SS-4 and listing yourself as a "responsible party" but not disclosing your SSN. On the form where it asks for an SSN, write "FOREIGN" to indicate you are a non-resident without an SSN.

3. Have a third-party designee like your business partner, accountant, or attorney apply for the EIN on behalf of the business. They would provide their SSN or ITIN instead of yours. You'll need to complete Form 8821 to authorize them.

4. Apply for the EIN online, and instead of entering your SSN, choose the "responsible party" option and fill it out with your name and address, but do not provide your SSN.

In all these options, your personal SSN is not directly tied to the EIN. The EIN is really just for the IRS to identify your business. Let me know if any of these paths work best for your situation or if you have any other questions!

Answered 5 months ago

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