How to Get a Charity Tax ID Number

Written by ehow personal finance editor
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In order for your charity or non-profit organization to buy goods tax-exempt, accept donations and provide proof of tax deductions or even open a bank account, you will need a charity tax ID number. Follow these simple steps to get a charity tax ID number.

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  1. 1

    Obtain Form SS-4 from the Internal Revenue Service. This is an application for an employer identification number, which is the same as tax ID number according the IRS. You can download the form directly from the IRS website.

  2. 2

    Complete Form SS-4 according the attached instructions. You will need to read all the instructions carefully since there will be some sections that may or may not apply to your charity.

  3. 3

    Submit Form SS-4 in a variety of ways. You can complete and submit the form online in one easy step, download and print the form and send to the address indicated on the form or submit it via phone or fax.

  4. 4

    Wait for the IRS to issue your charity tax ID number or employer identification number. The quickest way to get your tax ID number is by applying online. A faxed application will take about a week for a response, and a mailed Form SS-4 should take 4 to 6 weeks to process.

Tips and warnings

  • Apply for your charity tax ID number well before you will need to use it to file a return or make a deposit to allow time to process.
  • Keep in mind that getting a tax ID number does not automatically give tax-exempt status to your charity. You will need to use your tax ID number to apply for tax-exempt status in your state.

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