It's important to apply for EIN non profit when you have a non-profit organization. A non-profit organization has a motivation besides financial gain that usually involves the advocacy of a certain ideology or social cause. Unlike other business entities, non-profits use their revenue to achieve a certain mission or purpose instead of giving the extra income to their shareholders.

What Is a Non-Profit Organization?

When it comes to legal and financial issues, non-profit entities are organized in various ways depending on the state. For extra tax benefits, a non-profit organization can file articles of incorporation in the state where it was formed or in a state that it designates as its jurisdiction.

There are several advantages when it comes to organizing a non-profit. Since it isn't working for extra income, a non-profit is tax-exempt, and it is similar to a corporation, with the exception of shareholders.

Non-profits can choose not to incorporate, in which case they will not be given federal tax-exempt status. This means that they will need to report the following:

  • Deductions
  • Income
  • Losses

Non-profits that are not incorporated give up the chance to apply for grant money (public or private) and property tax exemptions, nor can they receive tax-deductible donations, among other things. Because of this, it's smart for all non-profit organizations to incorporate so they'll have these important benefits.

What Is an EIN?

Every business needs an EIN, or employer identification number, whether it operates for profit or not. Other names for this number include "Federal Tax Identification Number" and "Federal Employer Identification Number." The IRS issues this number, which is used for all legal activities of the organization, including hiring employees, opening up bank accounts, filing tax forms, and applying for business licenses. An EIN is similar to a Social Security number, with a format of "12-3456789."

It's smart to have an EIN so that you don't have to use your Social Security number when you begin the process of forming a non-profit. Some states require that you file for this before applying for tax-exempt status from the IRS.

How to Apply for an EIN

The person in an organization who does the application for an EIN must be an authorized and responsible officer or member of the organization. An incorporator or agent can also file for the EIN on the organization's behalf. This person will need to use his or her personal Social Security number on the application, but it won't be needed once the EIN is established.

The person in charge of applying for the EIN will also need to supply the following information:

  • Legal name of the organization
  • Mailing address of the organization
  • Physical address of the organization

The IRS offers several ways to apply for an EIN. These include mail, phone, and fax. If you're facing a deadline, it's important to keep in mind that some methods will be faster than others. If you're filing by fax or mail, download Form SS-4 from the IRS's website, and put the company's information at the top of the form. Choose "non-profit organization" as the business entity, and answer all the necessary questions.

At the bottom of the form, sign your name and enter the date. Then mail or fax it to the address listed on the form. Obviously, faxing it will be faster. If the application is faxed, it will take about four days to hear back from the IRS, while it may take up to four weeks if you mail the form.

When applying by phone, call the IRS Business and Specialty Tax Line between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. EST at 800-829-4933. If you're not located in the United States, dial 215-516-6999. You'll have to answer questions, similar to those on Form SS-4, about the operations of your non-profit. When you're finished, make sure to write down the EIN that is assigned to you.

Applying online is the easiest and preferred method. Fill out the form and choose non-profit for the entity type. When you're finished, download the PDF file so that you have proof of your EIN, and make a copy for your company. The IRS lets a person receive just one EIN each day for any entities that they represent.

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