How to Obtain an EIN in Tennessee | A Comprehensive Guide

Obtain an EIN in Tennessee

In starting an LLC in Tennessee, it is crucial to understand the importance of an Employer Identification Number (EIN) and how it impacts your business operations. An EIN is a unique nine-digit number the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) assigns to businesses operating in the United States for identification purposes. This number is essential for running a business, such as filing taxes, opening bank accounts, and hiring employees.

This article will explore the complete guide to obtaining an EIN in Tennessee and the responsibilities and requirements associated with having an EIN.

Webinarcare Editorial Team will help you understand the process of obtaining an EIN. You must be guided by all the factors gathered in this article.

EIN Definition and Purpose

To form an LLC, an EIN is necessary for your business. An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a federal tax identification number used by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to identify businesses in the United States. It is similar to a Social Security Number (SSN) for individuals but is specifically designed for businesses. The main purpose of an EIN is to help the IRS track and administer taxes for companies.

In Tennessee, businesses are required to have an EIN if they meet any of the following criteria:

  • Have employees
  • Operate as a Partnership or Corporation in Tennessee
  • File tax returns for employment, excise, or Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) taxes
  • Withhold taxes on income, other than wages, paid to a non-resident alien
  • Have a Keogh plan (a tax-deferred pension plan for self-employed individuals or unincorporated businesses)
  • Are involved with trusts, estates, real estate mortgage investment conduits, non-profit organizations, farmers’ cooperatives, or plan administrators

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How to Obtain an EIN in Tennessee

Obtaining an EIN in Tennessee is a straightforward process; several methods are available to apply for one. However, if you want to be at ease with the process you can hire an LLC Services in Tennessee, with add-ons of obtaining an EIN.

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Online Application Process

The easiest and fastest way to obtain an EIN is by applying online through the IRS website. The online application is available for businesses in Tennessee and the rest of the United States.


To apply for an EIN online, follow these steps:

  1. Visit the IRS EIN Assistant webpage.
  2. Click “Apply Online Now” and follow the prompts to complete the application.
  3. Provide the necessary information, such as your legal name, trade name (if applicable), business address, and the responsible party’s Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.
  4. Select the appropriate legal structure for your business (e.g., sole proprietorship, general partnership, corporation, etc.).
  5. Provide additional information as required, such as the number of employees, the reason for applying, and the primary business activity.
  6. Review and submit your application.

Upon successful completion of the application, you will receive your EIN immediately. Save or print a copy of the confirmation notice for your records.

Other Application Methods

If you prefer not to apply online or are unable to access the online application, you can also obtain an EIN through the following methods:

  • Fax: Complete Form SS-4 (Application for Employer Identification Number) and fax it to the appropriate fax number listed on the IRS website. You should receive your EIN within four business days.
  • Mail: Complete Form SS-4 and mail it to the appropriate address on the IRS website. The processing time for mailed applications is approximately four weeks.
  • Telephone: International applicants can apply for an EIN by calling the IRS at 267-941-1099 (not a toll-free number) from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

After you have your EIN number, you can benefit in several ways. It will give your Tennessee LLC the final advantage necessary to operate fully without legal or judicial issues.

If you have a Registered Agent, he can file an EIN for your business. Also, if you are planning to file for an LLC in Tennessee, your Registered Agent should file for the Articles of Organization in Tennessee.

Uses of EIN in Tennessee

An EIN must run a business in Tennessee. Some of the primary uses for an EIN include:

Opening a Business Bank Account

Banks typically require an EIN to open a business bank account, which is essential for separating your personal and business finances. With a business bank account, you can accept payments, deposit funds, and manage your company’s finances more efficiently.

If you are planning a bank for your Tennessee business, you can check out the Best Banks in Tennessee, which offer the best combination of fees, services, and convenience for your business needs.

Filing State and Federal Taxes

Businesses in Tennessee must file taxes with both the state and federal governments, and an EIN is necessary to report and pay these taxes. Your EIN is used on various tax forms, such as income tax returns, employment tax returns, and excise tax returns which you can pay in Tennessee Department of Revenue.

Payroll and Employee Tax Reporting

If your business has employees, you will need an EIN to report wages and other compensation paid to your workers. Additionally, an EIN is required for withholding and remitting federal income and payroll taxes on your employees’ behalf.

If you hire an employee for your business, you must request that your employees complete the following forms:

  • Employment Eligibility Form
  • Federal Tax Withholding Form
  • W-4 Form
  • Workers Compensation Claim Form
  • Disability Self-Identification Form
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Form

Applying for Business Licenses and Permits

An EIN is often required when applying for business licenses and permits in Tennessee. These licenses and permits may be necessary for various aspects of your business operations, such as zoning approval, health permits, or sales tax registration.

In Tennessee, business license fee costs around the range of $50 – $300. You can check out Tennessee Business Licenses to learn more about licenses and permits.

Establishing Credit and Securing Loans

An EIN can help your business establish credit, as it serves as an identifier for your company in the eyes of financial institutions. Additionally, lenders may require an EIN when applying for business loans or lines of credit.

Responsibilities and Requirements for EIN Holders in Tennessee

As an EIN holder in Tennessee, you are responsible for several tasks related to maintaining and managing your EIN. Some of these responsibilities and requirements include:

Updating the IRS on Changes to Business Information

If your business undergoes significant changes, such as a change in address, legal structure, or a responsible party, you must inform the IRS by filing the appropriate forms. This ensures the IRS has accurate and up-to-date information about your business and can properly administer taxes.

update my information

You can go to the Update My Information website of the Internal Revenue Service.

Required Tax Filings and Payments

With an EIN, your business is responsible for filing various tax returns and making tax payments to federal and state governments. Be informed about the specific tax obligations for your business type and industry in Tennessee.

To keep your business in good standing in Tennessee, you must file an Annual Report with the Tennessee Secretary of State. The annual report provides updated information about your LLC, such as changes in address, members, or Registered Agent.

Record-Keeping Requirements

Proper record-keeping is essential for businesses with an EIN, as it helps ensure accurate tax reporting and compliance with laws and regulations. Maintain records of your company’s income, expenses, and other financial transactions to facilitate accurate tax filing and minimize potential issues with the IRS.

Establish a reliable accounting system to track income, expenses, and tax obligations. You can manage your finances using spreadsheets, accounting software, or hiring a professional accountant.

Closing an EIN Account

Suppose your business ceases operations or no longer requires an EIN. In that case, you must notify the IRS by submitting a letter containing your complete legal name, EIN, business address, and the reason for closing the account. This allows the IRS to update its records and prevent future tax-related issues.

cancel EIN

If you have a copy of the EIN Assignment Notice that was issued when your EIN was assigned, include that when you write it to the IRS with the below mailing address:

  • Internal Revenue Service MS 6055 Kansas City, MO 64108
  • Internal Revenue Service MS 6273 Ogden, UT 84201

Or, you can check out Canceling an EIN via the IRS for further information.

Common Issues and Solutions for EIN in Tennessee

Business owners in Tennessee may encounter issues related to their EIN, such as losing or misplacing the number, incorrect information on the EIN application, or changes in business structure or ownership. Here are some solutions to common EIN-related problems:

  • Lost or Misplaced EIN: If you lose or misplace your EIN, you can contact the IRS by calling their Business & Specialty Tax Line at 1-800-829-4933. The IRS representative can provide you with your EIN after verifying your identity.
  • Incorrect Information on EIN Application: Suppose you discover an error on your EIN application, such as an incorrect business name or address. In that case, you can correct the information by submitting a letter to the IRS detailing the changes. Be sure to include your EIN, the incorrect information, and the correct information in your letter.
  • Change in Business Structure or Ownership: If your business undergoes a significant legal structure or ownership change, you may need to obtain a new EIN. Consult the IRS guidelines to determine if a new EIN is necessary.
  • Dealing with Identity Theft or Fraud: If you suspect your EIN has been compromised or used fraudulently, immediately report the issue to the IRS. The IRS can guide you through the steps to secure your EIN and protect your business from potential tax-related issues.

State-Specific EIN Information and Resources

To further assist businesses in Tennessee, here are some state-specific resources and information related to EINs and taxation:

  • State Tax Agency Information: The Tennessee state tax agency can provide information on state tax requirements, forms, and filing deadlines. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the state tax obligations for your business type and industry.
  • Business Registration Requirements: In addition to obtaining an EIN, businesses in Tennessee must also register with the appropriate state agencies. This may include registering your business name, obtaining necessary licenses and permits, and registering for state taxes.
  • Employer Tax Obligations and Filings: Employers in Tennessee must comply with various state tax obligations, such as withholding state income tax from employee wages and reporting these withholdings to Tennessee Department of Revenue. Research your business’s specific employer tax requirements in Tennessee.
  • Local Resources and Assistance for Businesses in Tennessee: Many local organizations and government agencies in Tennessee offer resources and assistance for small business owners. These resources may include business counseling, training, and financial assistance programs.

Do I Need to Apply for an EIN If I Also Have Business In Other States?

Yes, if you are operating a business with employees, have a corporation or partnership, or are required to file employment, excise, or alcohol, tobacco, and firearms tax returns, you will need an EIN (Employer Identification Number). If your business operates in multiple states, you only need one EIN for federal tax purposes. However, you may need to register for state-specific tax identification numbers in each state where you conduct business. Check with the Tennessee Department of Revenue to determine their requirements.


Is it necessary to obtain a Tennessee EIN for my business?
It depends on your business structure and activities but mostly, yes, it is required.
How can I apply for a Tennessee EIN?
You can apply online, fax, mail, or by phone.
Which agency in Tennessee provides EIN services?
The IRS is responsible for issuing EINs.
Is there a fee for obtaining a Tennessee EIN?
No, there is no fee for obtaining an EIN.
How long does it take to get a Tennessee EIN?
Online applications receive the EIN quickly, while other methods take a few weeks.
Can I apply for a Tennessee EIN without a social security number?
No, you must have a social security number to apply.
Can I apply for a Tennessee EIN if I do not have a physical address in Tennessee?
Yes, you can apply for a Tennessee EIN regardless of your location.
Do I need a Tennessee EIN to hire employees in Tennessee?
Yes, you will need an EIN to hire employees in Tennessee.
Can I use my personal social security number instead of a Tennessee EIN for my business?
It is not recommended because it can create security issues and personal liability.
Is a Tennessee EIN the same as a sales tax ID number?
No, they are different identification numbers for different purposes.
What is the validity period of a Tennessee EIN?
The EIN is permanent as long as it is used to file tax returns or other governmental forms.
Can I operate my business without a Tennessee EIN?
For tax filing purposes, it is required that you obtain an EIN if your business is not a sole proprietorship.
Can I cancel a Tennessee EIN?
Yes, you can by writing to the IRS with your business information and reason for cancellation.
Will my Tennessee EIN be listed publically?
Yes, it will be listed in IRS and public documents as a taxpayer identification number.
What is the main reason for obtaining a Tennessee EIN?
It serves as the primary tax identification number for your business.
Do I need to renew a Tennessee EIN?
No, you do not have to renew it unless certain changes in your business or activities require a new EIN.
Can I apply for multiple EINs for my business?
It is not recommended, one EIN per entity is sufficient.
Can I change the information on my Tennessee EIN application after it is issued?
You can update certain information by contacting the IRS, written changes may require obtaining a new EIN.
Should I apply for my Tennessee EIN before or after registering my business in Tennessee?
You can apply for an EIN at any time, but some entities require completing formal business registration before applying.
Can I use my Tennessee EIN for multiple businesses?
No, each business should have unique EIN.
Is it possible to expedite the Tennessee EIN application process?
No specific expedite options, however, online applications are processed comparatively faster.
Can I obtain a Tennessee EIN for my non-profit organization?
Yes, non-profit organizations can obtain a Tennessee EIN.
Do I need a Tennessee EIN if my business is based in another state?
If you have business activity in Tennessee, then it is recommended that you obtain a Tennessee EIN as well.
Can I apply for a Tennessee EIN on behalf of my client?
Yes, authorized representatives can apply on behalf of clients.
Can I obtain a Tennessee EIN for my estate?
Yes, estates can obtain a Tennessee EIN.
Will I receive a Tennessee EIN certificate after the application is processed?
No, you will receive an Employer Identification Number Assignment Notice instead.
Do I need to apply for a new Tennessee EIN if I change my business name or entity type?
Yes, making substantial changes requires obtaining a new Tennessee EIN.
How often can I apply for a Tennessee EIN?
As often as you need one, so long as it is not for fraudulent reasons.
What is an EIN?
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is an identification number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to businesses for tax filing purposes.
Why do I need an EIN in Tennessee?
You need an EIN in Tennessee if you plan on hiring employees, opening a bank account for your business, or filing federal taxes.
How do I get an EIN in Tennessee?
You can get an EIN in Tennessee by applying online through the IRS website, by fax, by mail, or by phone.
Is there a fee to get an EIN in Tennessee?
No, there is no fee to get an EIN in Tennessee.
Who is eligible to apply for an EIN in Tennessee?
Anyone who is opening a business, hiring employees, or making changes to an existing business structure in Tennessee is eligible to apply for an EIN.
Do I need to have a physical office in Tennessee to apply for an EIN?
No, you do not need to have a physical office in Tennessee to apply for an EIN.
How long does it take to get an EIN in Tennessee?
It typically takes only a few minutes to get an EIN in Tennessee when applying online. By mail or fax, it can take up to four business days. By phone, you can get your number immediately.
What information do I need to provide to apply for an EIN in Tennessee?
You will need to provide your business name, mailing address, type of business, and social security number or taxpayer identification number.
Can I apply for an EIN if I have not yet registered my business in Tennessee?
Yes, you can apply for an EIN even if you have not yet registered your business in Tennessee.
Do I need to renew my EIN in Tennessee?
No, your EIN will never expire or need to be renewed.
Can I change the name on my EIN in Tennessee?
Yes, you can change the name on your EIN by submitting Form SS-4 to the IRS.
Can I use my EIN for multiple businesses in Tennessee?
No, each business will need to apply for a separate EIN.
What are the hours of operation for the EIN telephone service in Tennessee?
The EIN telephone service in Tennessee is open Monday through Friday, 7:00 am to 10:00 pm local time.
What documentation do I need to provide to get an EIN in Tennessee?
You may need to provide documentation such as partnership agreements, articles of incorporation, or other legal paperwork when applying for an EIN.
What happens if I forget my EIN?
You can look up your EIN on the IRS website or contact the EIN telephone service in Tennessee for assistance.
How can I cancel my EIN in Tennessee?
If you have a business entity that has closed, you should write a letter to the IRS and mark it “Final Return Enclosed” and return it to the IRS address where you would normally file your business tax return.
Can I hire employees before obtaining an EIN in Tennessee?
No, you must obtain an EIN before you can hire employees.
Is it necessary to have an EIN number for a sole proprietorship in Tennessee?
If you’re a sole proprietorship, have no employees, and only file tax returns for yourself using your Social Security number as a tax ID, then you’re not required to have an EIN.
Will I receive a physical EIN certificate in Tennessee?
No, you will not receive a physical EIN certificate in Tennessee.
Is an EIN the same as a sales tax ID number in Tennessee?
No, an EIN and a sales tax ID number are different, however, you will likely need both if you plan to collect sales tax in Tennessee.
Can I apply for an EIN online in Tennessee if I have an existing business outside of the state?
Yes, you can apply for an EIN online in Tennessee even if you have an existing business outside the state.
Can I change the business entity type on my EIN in Tennessee?
Yes, you can change the business entity type on your EIN by filing the appropriate paperwork with the IRS.
What types of businesses need an EIN in Tennessee?
All types of businesses in Tennessee need an EIN if they have employees or file federal taxes.
Where do I send my paper EIN application in Tennessee?
Send your paper EIN application to the IRS address for your state.
Do I need to be a Tennessee resident to apply for an EIN in Tennessee?
No, you do not need to be a Tennessee resident to apply for an EIN in Tennessee.
How long is my EIN valid in Tennessee?
Your EIN is valid for the duration of your Tennessee business.
Can I use my EIN as proof of business registration in Tennessee?
No, your EIN is not proof of business registration in Tennessee.

Also Read

How to Save Money While Getting Ein for Tennessee LLC

First and foremost, do your research. Before you even begin the process of forming your Tennessee LLC, take the time to thoroughly research the various requirements and regulations in place. This will help you avoid any costly mistakes or oversights that could end up costing you time and money down the road. Remember that failing to dot your I’s and cross your T’s can result in fines and delays, so it’s worth investing the time upfront to get it right.

Next, consider whether you truly need to hire a lawyer or service to help you form your LLC. While it can be tempting to offload this task onto a professional, keep in mind that legal fees can quickly add up. If you have a basic understanding of the process and are willing to put in the time and effort, you may be able to handle most of the paperwork on your own. There are plenty of online resources and guides available to walk you through each step of forming your LLC, so take advantage of these free or low-cost resources.

Another way to save money when setting up your Tennessee LLC is to shop around for the best deals on necessary services. From registering your business name to acquiring an Employer Identification Number (EIN), there are several steps involved in forming an LLC that may require outside assistance. Be sure to compare prices and credentials when hiring professionals to help you with these tasks. Additionally, consider bundling services or negotiating package deals to save even more money.

When it comes to ongoing costs associated with your Tennessee LLC, consider ways to minimize expenses without sacrificing quality. For example, think about utilizing virtual office services or co-working spaces instead of leasing a traditional office space. Renting equipment or utilizing cloud-based software can also help you save money on overhead costs. By being mindful of your expenses and exploring alternative options, you may be able to significantly reduce your monthly operating costs.

In conclusion, starting a Tennessee LLC doesn’t have to break the bank. By doing your research, considering whether professional help is truly necessary, shopping around for the best deals, and finding creative ways to cut costs, you can save money while still getting your business off the ground. Remember that every dollar saved is a dollar that can be invested back into your business’s growth and success. With a little strategic planning and savvy decision-making, you can set up your Tennessee LLC without emptying your wallet.


Understanding the importance and uses of an EIN in Tennessee is crucial for the successful operation of your business. By obtaining and maintaining your EIN, you can ensure compliance with federal and state tax laws, establish a strong financial foundation for your company, and access various resources and opportunities for growth. Be sure to utilize the available resources and support for businesses in Tennessee to maximize your chances of success.

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