Internal Revenue Service Number [IRSN] Vs Individual Tax Identification Number [ITIN]

Understanding IRSN and ITIN: Similarities and Differences

What is an IRSN?

 The IRSN looks like an ITIN since it’s in the same 9-digit format and begins with “9”, but it’s only a temporary internal identifying number the IRS uses for its files until the taxpayer is assigned an SSN or ITIN, or until their SSN or ITIN is found.

 When is an IRSN Issued to the taxpayer?

The IRS will use the IRSN in any correspondence with the taxpayer, So the taxpayer cans use this reference of the IRSN in their correspondence with the IRS, including with payments.

If the taxpayer’s application [Foreign person filing 1040NR tax return or spouse of US citizen with 1040 filing] for an ITIN is rejected, the IRS assigns the tax return an Internal Revenue Service Number (IRSN) so the return can be forwarded for processing.

The IRS will also assign an IRSN if there is no ITIN or SSN on a tax return, payment, or other document, or if the one used on the return cannot be located or matches another taxpayer.

 What is an ITIN?

A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is an identification number used by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the administration of tax laws. The TIN or the ITIN number is mainly issued for foreign persons who are not US Citizens or residents in the USA and have US tax reporting or reclaim obligations from the USA Revenue. For more detailed information on the ITIN requirement please refer to our earlier blog on ITIN Requirements.

Important Note: If have been issued an IRSN number and expecting an IRS refund claim your refund will not be processed unless you have a valid ITIN approved by completing Form W7 with a certified passport copy from IRS-approved acceptance agents. So IRSN works only for the payment of taxes but not for the refund claim from IRS office.

If a Form W-7 is attached then one of the documents proving the identity, and foreign status of the original passport is to be sent unless you are taking the service of the IRS Acceptance Agent who can certify the passports.

For more details on the step-by-step ITIN application work process by acceptance agents please check this blog.

Our team specializes in international expatriate U.S. personal tax return service. If you need assistance with ITIN Renewal/US 1040 filing for refund claim/FATCA Compliance work/FBAR FINCEN114 Filing, ITIN/ Form W7 Application/E.I.N./Form W8BENE or Certified Acceptance Agents [C.A.A.] services/1040NR U.S. tax filing for refund claim of excess 1042S / 8288A/ 8805/ W2/ 1099. We are happy to assist our clients in a timely, efficient, and cost-effective way.

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