Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs) are used by people who have tax filing or payment obligations under U.S. law but who are not eligible for a Social Security number. It is a tax processing number issued by the Internal Revenue Service.

ITINs are issued to

• Nonresident alien who is required to file a U.S. tax return
• U.S. resident alien who is (based on days present in the United States) filing a dual U.S. tax return
• Dependent or spouse of a U.S. citizen/resident alien
• Dependent or spouse of a nonresident alien visa holder
• Nonresident alien claiming a tax treaty benefit
• Nonresident alien student, professor or researcher filing a U.S. tax return or claiming an exception

An ITIN does not:

• Authorize work in the U.S.
• Provide eligibility for Social Security benefits
• Qualify a dependent for Earned Income Tax Credit Purposes

ITINs that have not been used on a federal tax return at least once in the last three consecutive years will expire Dec. 31, 2017.

To renew an ITIN, a taxpayer must complete a form W7 and submit all required documentation including a reason for needing an ITIN.

Federal returns that are submitted with an expired ITIN will be processed. However, exemptions and/or certain tax credits will be disallowed. Once the ITIN is renewed, any applicable exemptions and credits will be restored and any refunds will be issued.

The IRS no longer accepts passports that do not have a date of entry into the U.S. as a stand-alone identification document for dependents from a country other than Canada or Mexico, or dependents of U.S. military personnel overseas. The dependent’s passport must have a date of entry stamp, otherwise the following additional documents to prove U.S. residency are required:

  • U.S. medical records for dependents under age 6,
  • U.S. school records for dependents under age 18, and
  • U.S. school records (if a student), rental statements, bank statements or utility bills listing the applicant’s name and U.S. address, if over age 18
I created this blog to help understand certain basic aspects of U.S. tax law. Of course, each situation is unique and nothing that is on this site will ever replace the expert advice of a tax professional.

Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any question.

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