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ITIN Policy Change Summary for 2013

Changes impacting individuals applying for an ITIN

The information below highlights improvements to the ITIN program. They go into effect January 1, 2013. 

  • ITINs issued on or after January 1, 2013, will expire on December 31 five years after the ITIN was issued. The five years include the year the ITIN was issued.
    •  At this time, ITINs issued prior to January 1, 2013 are not affected.
  • The IRS will not accept Forms W-7 submitted to reapply for the ITIN prior to January 1 of the year the ITIN expires. If Forms W-7 are submitted prior to this timeframe:
    • All documents attached to the Form W-7 will be returned to the sender.
    • Any tax returns attached to the W-7 will be processed using the currently assigned ITIN.
  • Future information on this policy change will be posted to this web page as it becomes available.
  • If you are applying directly to the IRS for an ITIN, we will only accept original identification documents or certified copies of these documents from the issuing agency along with a completed Form W-7 and Federal tax return.
  • In addition to direct submission of documents to the IRS centralized site or use of CAAs, ITIN applicants will have several other avenues for verification of key documents. These options include some key IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers (TACs), U.S. Tax Attachés in London, Paris, Beijing and Frankfurt and at Low-Income Taxpayer Clinics (LITCs) and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Centers that use CAAs. The table below provides the full list of options for submitting ITIN documents.
  • Table: Options for ITIN Applicant’s Submission of Documentation
Applications Submitted to: Criteria for Document Certification Applicants Covered
IRS ITIN Operations (Austin)
  • Direct applicant submission by mail
  • Original or copies certified by issuing agency

Certify all approved document types

  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Dependents

 

Participating IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers (TACs)
  • In person submission for each applicant
  • Original or copies certified by issuing agency
  • Certify passport and national identification cards only

All other original documentation is mailed with W-7 application

  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Dependents
IRS Tax Attachés (London, Paris, Beijing, Frankfurt)
  • In person submission for each applicant
  • Original or copies certified by issuing agency

Certify all approved document types

  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Dependents
Certifying  Acceptance Agents (CAA) including LITC and VITA CAAs
  • In person submission for each applicant
  • Original or copies certified by issuing agency
  • Certify all approved document types

Dependent’s original documentation or copies certified by the issuing agency is mailed with W-7 application

  • Primary
  • Secondary

 

Educational Institutions (Colleges, Universities)
  • Follow SEVP approved process issued 10/2/2012
  • Primary
  • Secondary
  • Dependents
  • New ITINs will now be issued for a five-year period rather than in indefinite period. This change will help ensure that ITINs are being used for legitimate tax purposes.
  • There are four exceptions to this new documentation requirement described above. Applicants who are not impacted by these changes include:
    • U.S. military spouses and U.S. military dependents
    • Non-resident aliens applying for ITINs for the purpose of claiming tax treaty benefits
    • Noncitizens that have approved TY 2011 extensions to file their tax returns. These are temporary ITINs.
    • Student Exchange Visitors Program (SEVP) participants

Changes impacting Certifying Acceptance Agents

  • The application and renewal process remain unchanged. You are still required to submit new and renewed applications using Form 13551 during the next annual open season scheduled from May 1 through August 31, 2013.
  • You are allowed to use Form 14194 to certify that you have reviewed and verified the original documentation or a certified copy from the issuing agency of those documents through face-to-face or video electronic interviews with all primary and secondary applicants.
  • You are required to submit copies of the documents that you reviewed for the primary and secondary applicants along with the Form 14194. You are also required to attach the original documents or certified copies from the issuing agency for dependents.
  • Because of the important role you as a CAA play, you must now be covered under the professional standards of Circular 230. This includes individuals who are attorneys, admitted to practice before the bar, Certified Public Accountants, Enrolled Agents and registered tax return preparers. In addition, you cannot be under suspension or disbarment from practice before the IRS.
  • In addition to the CAA training currently available on IRS.gov, CAAs and their authorized representatives who provide assistance to resident and non-resident applicants are now required to complete forensic training. This training will aid in identifying fraudulent identification documents. This training is at your own expense and must be completed by December 31, 2013. It must provide the skills to effectively recognize fraudulent documents, particularly passports, driver’s licenses, birth certificates, visas, national identification cards, military and US state ID cards. The original written certification must be provided on letterhead or certification to the IRS no later than January 31, 2014. It should be mailed to:

Internal Revenue, ITIN Policy Section
401 W. Peachtree St, NW, Mail Stop 97WI
Atlanta GA  30308 

 

 

 

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 19-Mar-2014