Updated August 18, 2020: 

An IRS corporate name change Form 8822 can be made by indicating the name change on the corporation's annual Form 1120. Other business types inform the IRS of the name change by filing the appropriate form or writing a letter to the IRS. Form 8822-B is a document that businesses use to inform the IRS of a recent change in address or their principal party. The IRS should ideally be informed of major changes in a business's details within 60 days of the change.

Implications of Changing Your Business Name, Address, and Responsible Party

Changing a business's name or address is normally a simple process done by filing with your state's secretary of state. But such a change might have wide-ranging implications on the operations and filing requirements of the business. To maintain smooth working relationships, the change should be communicated to your customers, suppliers, and state tax authorities. 

The federal government also requires businesses to inform the IRS of any changes in the name, address, or responsible party of the business. This is necessary to ensure that the business receives notifications from the IRS.

How to Communicate a Business Name Change to the Federal Government

  • Determine If You Need to Change the EIN
    The change of a business's name may necessitate the business to apply for a new EIN. For example, a change of the EIN may be required if the name change results from a statutory merger of two corporations or if the name change is because of converting a corporation to a partnership.
  • Communicate the Name Change to the IRS
    To inform the IRS of your business name change, complete your annual Form 1120 if your business is a corporation or Form 1120S if the business is an S corporation. Check “Name Change” on the first page and then fill in your company's new name in Section A. The “Name Change” option is on line E on Form 1120 or line H on Form 1120S.
    Partnerships file using Form 1065 and communicate the name change by checking “Name change” on line G and then filling in the new name. Sole proprietorships communicate the name change by writing a letter to the IRS. 

To communicate the name change, businesses can alternatively write a letter signed by one of the business's members or officers along with the Certificate of Amendment. The later must state basic details about the business, including its EIN, its old name, and the new name.

Change of Business Mailing Address or Business Location

The IRS has to be notified of any change to your business's location or mailing address. This is effected by using the Change of Address-Business, Form 8822-B. You should mail the completed form to an IRS office near your state. The form should be filed within 60 days of the address change.

Changing the Business's Responsible Party

A responsible party of an entity is a person who has a measure of financial control on the business. He or she might be the owner for sole proprietorships and single-member entities or a CEO of a corporation. A change of the principal officer of a business should be communicated either by letter or using IRS Form 8822-B. The letter should state the name, mailing address, and Social Security Number (SSN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN) of the new Principal Officer.

The IRS should notify you that it has received the letter within 60 days. If 60 days pass without a reply from the IRS, you should fax the letter to the IRS as a “second request.”

Form 8822-B makes it easy to communicate the change because it has standard fields to be filled in. The form requires the following details:

  • The business name
  • The business Employer Identification Number
  • The old mailing address
  • The new mailing address (if it has changed)
  • The new business location (if it has changed)
  • The name, TIN, and SSN or EIN of the old responsible party
  • The name, TIN, and SSN or EIN of the new responsible party
  • The signature of a representative of the business

The completed form should be sent by mail to the IRS office nearest to your state.

If you need help to change your business name, address, or responsible party, you can post your legal need on UpCounsel's marketplace. UpCounsel accepts only the top 5 percent of lawyers to its site. Lawyers on UpCounsel come from law schools such as Harvard Law and Yale Law and average 14 years of legal experience, including work with or on behalf of companies like Google, Menlo Ventures, and Airbnb.