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What to Do About a Lost EIN Number

Lost EIN Number

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Do you run a business in the US? Then chances are, you need an employer identification number (EIN)

This is a unique nine-digit number given to you by the federal government, and it’s like a Social Security Number (SSN). However, this number is to identify businesses instead, not individuals.

Now, you might have a vague memory of your EIN, but you’re not sure when/if you applied for one. And even if you did, you’re not sure what the number is.

Those worried about a lost EIN number won’t have to fret. We’ll discuss the pertinent steps you need to take to find out this crucial information.

Check Your Files

After exclaiming, “I lost my EIN number!” take a deep breath. Chances are, you’ve kept detailed records in regard to your business, so take a look at those files first. For example, go into your email account and search terms like “employer identification number” or “EIN.” 

Another place to search is your previous tax returns (Form 1120). On the top right, there’s a box for your EIN. Your unique nine-digit number should be filled out there.

Have you sent 1099-MISC forms to workers, or have your clients provided you with one? Then your tax information number (TIN, which would be your EIN) should be on these forms too.

Otherwise, dig deeper; if you’ve applied for licenses or certificates in the past, the copies of these forms may have your EIN on them. The same goes for any credit reports you’ve received, bill payment requests, or loan applications you’ve sent to lenders. In addition, your tax accountant may have this information on record.

Contact the IRS

The IRS has a Business & Specialty Tax Line you can call: 800-829-4933. You can call them 7:00 am – 7:00 pm (local time), Monday through Friday. Wait times may be hours long occasionally, so be prepared to wait.

Do note that only authorized people can use this line to obtain the EIN. In addition to sole proprietors and partners, trustees, executors, and corporate officers also qualify as “authorized people.”

When you call, make sure that you have identifying information on hand. This will prove to the operator that you’re someone who can be trusted with company data.

Reach Out to the Business Formation Service You Used

There are companies that help people register their businesses, such as Business Anywhere. They’ll have your files on hand, which means you can easily retrieve vital information such as your EIN. All you have to do is ask us, “What is my EIN number?” and we’ll respond fast.

If you haven’t formed your company yet, then consider our business registration service. We can act as your registered agent, and you’ll even get the first year free.

And for an additional fee, we can apply for your EIN so you don’t have to. Other extra services you can get include:

  • Operating agreement
  • Corporate bylaws
  • Sharehold agreement
  • Shareholder organizational minutes
  • Bank account opening referral
  • Banking resolution
  • S corp tax election filing
  • Company structure and tax consultation
  • Virtual mailbox
  • Beneficial ownership information report

As you can see, we can make starting a business easy and simple. This allows you to have an overall positive experience.

Retrieve Your Lost EIN Number

There are many ways how to get an EIN number if it’s lost, so don’t worry. Mainly, you should check your records and contact people you’ve worked with, including clients, vendors, lenders, and accountants.

A lost EIN number will never be lost to the void, especially since you can call the IRS as a last resort. So don’t panic, and utilize the above resources to get this essential number.

If you want to start a new business easily and quickly, sign up with Business Anywhere to start your dreams. We’ll help you every step of the way.

About Author

Picture of Rick Mak

Rick Mak

Rick Mak is a 30-year veteran businessman, having started, bought, and/or sold more than a dozen companies. He has bachelor's degrees in International Business, Finance, and Economics, with masters in both Entrepreneurship and International Law. He has spoken at hundreds of conferences around the world during his career on entrepreneurship, international tax law, asset protection, and company structure. Business Anywhere Editorial Guidelines

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