Understanding the 147C Letter: What it is and How to Respond (2023)

Businesses operating in the US or generating income within the US generally need an employer identification number (EIN). You use this tax ID to file your federal taxes. Similar to your social security number, it's your business identification. When you file Form SS-4, the IRS sends you a letter confirming your EIN by physical mail - called a "CP 575" notice. This letter proves you're a legitimate business when opening a corporate bank account, applying for loans, etc.

Is it just a problem? Internal Revenue Service (IRS) CP 575 letters are sent only once, and you can't get a copy if you lose it. It's probably something you remember by heart or have written on a sticky note somewhere, but sometimes it doesn't suffice. Your bank, vendors, and any other entity you partner with may require official verification.

Fortunately, there is another option. Let's take a look at letter 147C. This IRS-issued document serves as an alternative to the CP 575 when you lose your original EIN notice.

Table of contents

  1. What is a 147c letter?
  2. Who can request a 147c Letter?
  3. Why is a 147c letter Important?
  4. How does the IRS send the 147c letter?
  5. Why do you need a 147C letter?
  6. How to request a 147C letter

What is a 147c letter?

The 147c Letters are documents sent by the IRS to businesses. The company is sent a letter asking for information about its EIN or Employer Identification Number. Business owners use the 147c Letter to verify the validity of their EIN to ensure good standing with the IRS. Additionally, the letter requests payroll and tax information from the business.

The IRS 147c Letter should be responded to immediately after receiving it. You can be assessed penalties and interest on your taxes if you do not respond to the letter. In most cases, taxpayers receive their 147c letters in the mail. Please get in touch with a tax professional if you have questions or need assistance responding to the letter.

What Is An EIN, And Why Apply For It?

EIN stands for Employer Identification Number. The IRS assigns taxpayers a nine-digit identification number. It identifying a business entity requires an EIN. To obtain an EIN, you need to apply through the IRS. The process is free. If you require an EIN, you can apply online, by fax, or by mail.

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An EIN application is simple and easy to complete. A simple application form can be found on the IRS website; all you need to do is complete and submit it. The EIN will be the official business identification for all official IRS correspondence and documents once you apply for and receive them.

Understanding the 147C Letter: What it is and How to Respond (1)

147C letter example

To help you better visualize what we are referring to in this post, here are samples of the CP575 and 147C letters.

View 147C letter example

Who can request a 147c Letter?

IRS requests can only be accepted from authorized company representatives or persons authorized with powers of attorney.

(Video) How to Get a 147c Letter from IRS Quickly (without waiting for 10 to 12 business days)!!

Company Representative:

The IRS can allow only an owner or an authorized company representative to access the information in the 147c letter.

Power of Attorney:

A power of attorney is the second way to obtain a 147c letter. A person can be appointed as an agent by the company, who then must submit the document to the IRS.

Why is a 147c letter Important?

This letter allows business owners to fix errors and mismatches between the business name of their company and its corresponding EIN by utilizing the 147c letter. A bank requires the company's EIN before it can open a bank account, enroll in the bank's programs, or to open a bank account or enroll in the bank's programs for a given business.

Businesses can run into problems with multiple corporate entities, and banking information can get underreported. Consequently, the IRS can withhold 28% of credit card revenue when total receipts don't match reported numbers.

It's common for 147c letters to fix minor errors. The IRS's records can be mismatched with credit card companies' records by adding or omitting a period, comma, or misspelling. This way, the 147c letter allows you to cross-reference the Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) with the company's name. By using TINs, the credit card processing company enables owners of businesses to fix errors on time.

How does the IRS send the 147c letter?

There are several steps to the procedure:

  • This IRS employee requests an EIN number for the company and confirms that the person receiving the fax is secure and the only one receiving it.


  • When the representative has confirmed the order, the person will be placed on hold for approximately 35 minutes while the fax is sent.

  • The 147c letter is sent when a company representative answers and confirms.

IRS 147C letters are only sent via mail or fax. There are two ways to fax: traditional fax machines and digital fax machines. Security reasons mean the IRS doesn't send 147C verification letters via email.

Why do you need a 147C letter?

You need to know your company's EIN by heart. The IRS requires proof of income for business purposes. If you lose your CP 575, you will also need a 147C. If that's the case, here are some reasons you need to request a copy from the IRS.

Banking and financing

You will need EIN confirmation if you are applying for a business bank account or corporate credit card. Also, you will need it if you want to apply for a loan or seek investment. However, if you still need to get your CP 575, keep in mind that every bank and lender in the US accept 147C letters as well.

You must prove your EIN when engaging in US business banking or corporate financing. Because every business is assigned a unique EIN, banks and financial institutions use this proof to double-check your identity.

Filing tax forms

If you want to file payroll taxes or income tax forms with the IRS, you must provide your EIN. You don't need to send a copy of your CP 575 - all you need is your EIN. A CP 575 notice may be required only in the following situations:

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You need to remember your EIN. You may have lost previous copies of your tax returns (as they have your EIN). You need an EIN letter 147C if, in addition to everything mentioned above, you've also lost your CP 575.

Apply Permits for businesses and licenses

Several businesses must obtain licenses and permits to operate legally in the US. The application process in some states requires you to obtain an EIN. For example, if you're a vendor visiting Arizona, you'll have to get a "Transaction Privilege Tax" (TPT) license.

The critical requirement for a TPT license application has an EIN. You are not required to send copies of your EIN confirmation letter with license applications. It would certainly be helpful to have a 147C letter if you lost your CP 575 and cannot recall your EIN.

The enrollment process for Medicare

To benefit from Medicare, you must work in a hospital, clinic, or healthcare facility. When you enroll, all Medicare beneficiaries will be able to receive healthcare services from you. To provide institutional services, you must apply for enrollment with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

In addition to the application, all applicants are required to submit a copy of their EIN confirmation from the IRS. CMS will require a CP 575 or 147C letter to process your application.

Partnering with other companies

You'll need your 147C letter to partner with a business or hire a vendor. It may be necessary for some vendors (such as payroll providers) and merchants (such as payment processing services) to verify your EIN.

For example, QuickBooks requires that its clients send EIN verification letter 147c to the IRS to process direct deposits for their employees. Additionally, they may request this proof for formalities if you ever join forces with another company.

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How to request a 147C letter

According to IRS guidelines, a 147C letter can only be requested by a legitimate owner of a business or someone with Power of Attorney (POA) over them. Following are the steps to take if you check either of those boxes:

  • Call +1-800-829-4933. You can reach the IRS Business and Specialty Tax line Monday through Friday between 7 am and 7 pm local time (or Pacific time if you live in Hawaii or Alaska).
  • Select your preferred language (press 1 for English).
  • Press 1 for EIN "Employer Identification Numbers."
  • You can press three if you have an EIN but cannot remember it. Your call will be connected to an IRS agent. There may be a delay depending on the time and day.
  • If you lost your notice of CP 575, tell the agent you will need an EIN verification letter.

To ensure that you are the business owner or have the authority to be the agent, the agent will ask you a few security questions.

You'll be asked to choose between receiving your 147C letter by mail or fax once you successfully answer all the security questions. You will receive your 147C immediately by fax if you choose the latter. If you do not have a fax machine, you must send your documents by physical mail. In this case, you'll receive your verification letter within four to six weeks. The IRS does not email 147C letters due to security concerns.


What is the 147C letter? ›

A 147c letter, also known as an EIN letter, is a form sent to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) so a company can request their Employee Identification Number (EIN) or so a third party can verify a company's EIN with their permission.

How do I verify my 147C taxpayer identification number? ›

How to get a 147C EIN Verification Letter from the IRS. The only way to get an EIN Verification Letter (147C) is to call the IRS at 1-800-829-4933. For security reasons, the IRS will never send anything by email.

How do I get an EIN verification letter 147C? ›

You can contact the IRS directly and request a replacement confirmation letter called a 147C letter. Start by calling the IRS Business & Specialty Tax Line toll free at 1-800-829-4933 (or if you are calling outside the United States at 267-941-1099) between 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM EST.

How do I get an IRS letter verifying my EIN number? ›

How to Get an EIN Verification Letter From the IRS
  1. Call the IRS support at 800-829-4933.
  2. Provide the name of your business and other verification details like address and phone number to the support executive.
  3. Request the support executive for a 147c letter; placing such a request is free.

Why do I need a 147C letter? ›

Sometimes the IRS tells us that potential employers have an “existing EIN”. When this happens, only you can get your “existing EIN” from the IRS by asking them for a “147c letter”. The letter will confirm the employer name and EIN connected with the personal security information that you will provide to the IRS.

Who can request 147C? ›

Only an owner or a Power of Attorney (POA) can request a 147C Letter. If you would like a POA to request your EIN Verification Letter (147C), both you and your POA will need to complete the IRS Form 2848 and have it ready to send to the IRS via fax during the phone call with the IRS.

How do I verify an EIN number is correct? ›

Lost or Misplaced EIN Verification

The verification process for an authorized representative is simple. Call the IRS at (800) 829-4933.

How long does it take to verify EIN? ›

However, it will take up to two weeks before your EIN becomes part of the IRS's permanent records. You must wait until this occurs before you can: File an electronic return. Make an electronic payment.

Can I verify my EIN number online? ›

Anyone can access this information directly from the IRS. As such, a nonprofit must provide you the EIN upon request, and you can verify this directly with the IRS on the Exempt Organization page of the IRS website. The site not only verifies EINs but advises you if organizations are in good standing with the IRS.

How do I get a copy of my EIN confirmation letter? ›

Here are the steps to take if you misplace your IRS EIN confirmation letter: Call the IRS: If you need to contact the IRS, it'll have to be over the phone. To get a copy of your verification letter, you can call them toll-free at 1-800-829-4933.

What is an EIN confirmation letter? ›

A CP 575 EIN Confirmation Letter is a document issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to confirm the unique Employer Identification Number (EIN) they have issued to a new business.

How long does it take to get a 147c letter? ›

If you choose the fax method, the IRS agent will fax the 147c letter immediately over to you. But if you opt for mail, it could take 4-6 weeks for you to receive it.

How do I verify myself to IRS? ›

To verify your identity and tax return information, please call the phone number on the IRS letter that you received.

Can the IRS verify EIN? ›

Your previously filed return should be notated with your EIN. Ask the IRS to search for your EIN by calling the Business & Specialty Tax Line at 800-829-4933. The hours of operation are 7:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. local time, Monday through Friday.

Why would EIN be rejected? ›

Being denied an EIN means your business likely already has one. You only need a new EIN if there has been a significant change to the business's structure. Your EIN application may be rejected if: Your LLC has the same name as another entity in the US (this is usually accompanied by reference number 101)

Why would I need a verification of non filing letter? ›

An IRS Verification of Non-filing Letter provides proof that the IRS has no record of a filed Form 1040 for the year you requested. Note: If you typically would have filed a Puerto Rican or Foreign Income Tax Return you must submit appropriate non-filing documentation from a relevant tax authority.

Why would an employee need your EIN? ›

Employees – If you are hiring employees (whether one or many), you will need an EIN. This is the number the IRS will use to track your payroll tax remittances.

Can a foreign person get an EIN number? ›

Apply by Telephone – International Applicants

International applicants may call 267-941-1099 (not a toll-free number) 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday to obtain their EIN.

Can I give my EIN to anyone? ›

No, EINs are not kept confidential and are a matter of public record. Therefore, it is important that you keep your EIN safe and secure to ensure that no one attempts to commit fraud by using your EIN.

Can an immigrant get an EIN number? ›

All immigrants regardless of legal status are able to earn a living as independent contractors, or start a business using an ITIN, EIN, or SSN. Individuals may choose to apply for an EIN to identify a business entity and hire employees. An ITIN may be used to obtain an EIN.

What do first two digits of EIN mean? ›

Prior to 2001, the first two digits of an EIN (the EIN Prefix) indicated the business was located in a particular geographic area. In 2001, EIN assignment was centralized, although all 10 campuses can assign an EIN, if necessary.

Can you edit EIN information? ›

IRS regulations require EIN holders to update responsible party information within 60 days of any change by filing Form 8822-B, Change of Address or Responsible Party - Business.

What if I made a mistake on my EIN application? ›

Contact the IRS

Instead, you'll likely need to send a letter to the IRS to make changes. Here's the information you'll need to include in your letter: Full legal name and Social Security number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) of the responsible party. The business's full legal name.

Can I use my EIN instead of SSN when applying for credit? ›

A Social Security Number (SSN) or another tax identifier is required to apply for an EIN, but once assigned, EINs can often be used on credit or loan applications in lieu of SSNs.

Can I get a copy of my 147C letter online? ›

Can you get a 147c letter online? The only way to get an EIN Verification Letter (147C) is to call the IRS at 1-800-829-4933. For security reasons, the IRS will never send anything by email.

Do I get my EIN immediately? ›

After all validations are done you will get your EIN immediately upon completion. You can then download, save, and print your EIN confirmation notice.

Do EIN numbers expire? ›

Once an EIN has been assigned to a business entity, it becomes the permanent Federal taxpayer identification number for that entity. Regardless of whether the EIN is ever used to file Federal tax returns, the EIN is never reused or reassigned to another business entity.

Is EIN the same as tax ID? ›

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a federal tax identification number, and is used to identify a business entity. It is also used by estates and trusts which have income which is required to be reported on Form 1041, U.S. Income Tax Return for Estates and Trusts.

What information is on an EIN letter? ›

Your name and position with the company. Your EIN. The kind of income tax form you file for the business. Name and address of the LLC.

What does EIN show? ›

An employer identification number (EIN) is a nine-digit number assigned by the IRS. It's used to identify the tax accounts of employers and certain others who have no employees. The IRS uses the number to identify taxpayers who are required to file various business tax returns.

Is EIN same as E-Verify company identification number? ›

No. While you will be required to provide the Federal Tax Identification Number/EIN for your business to USCIS in order to register for E-Verify, a separate identification number will be provided to your business by USCIS to use for E-Verify purposes.

What is an ss4 or 147C letter? ›

A 147C letter is an IRS-issued document that verifies an already-existing EIN, which is why it's also called an “EIN verification letter.” This letter serves as a replacement for the CP 575 notice. You should request one if you ever misplace your CP 575.

Can I find my EIN number online? ›

The IRS doesn't provide a public database you can use to look up EIN numbers for your own company or others. However, you can look at your EIN confirmation letter or other places your number may be recorded, including previously filed tax returns or old financing documents.

What form is the EIN letter? ›

Use Form SS-4 to apply for an employer identification number (EIN). An EIN is a 9-digit number (for example, 12-3456789) assigned to employers, sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, estates, trusts, certain individuals, and other entities for tax filing and reporting purposes.

What is an official business letter from the IRS? ›

Most IRS letters and notices are about federal tax returns or tax accounts. Each notice deals with a specific issue and includes specific instructions on what to do. A notice may reference changes to a taxpayer's account, taxes owed, a payment request or a specific issue on a tax return.

How to get IRS letter 147C or IRS SS 4 confirmation letter? ›

SS4 EIN Verification Letter (147C)

The only way to get the EIN verification letter or 147C is to call the IRS at 1800-829-4933. You can either receive the EIN verification letter via mail or fax. Due to security reasons and data privacy, the IRS doesn't send the letter via email.

Is my EIN the same as my SSN? ›

An EIN is not linked or associated with your SSN. As such, it provides additional personal privacy protection by using a different number than your SSN for reporting purposes. You can easily apply online for the EIN through the IRS.

Does an EIN mean I have a business? ›

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, and is used to identify a business entity. Generally, businesses need an EIN. You may apply for an EIN in various ways, and now you may apply online.

Can you reverse search an EIN? ›

Rather than asking a company for their EIN, you can do an EIN lookup yourself. Or, if you have a company's EIN but not their name, you can do a reverse EIN lookup just as easily as you can look up a company's EIN. Remember to keep your business EIN private unless the IRS or a financial institution is asking for it.

Can I verify a tax ID number? ›

You can verify EIN number by calling the company's finance department. Suppose you can't do that to verify EIN number. You can also research whether the company has registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In that case, the SEC's Edgar system requires that a company's EIN appears on all documents.

Is EIN the same as LLC? ›

Your EIN identifies your business for tax purposes, and it can act as a social security number for a business. A limited liability company (LLC) is a type of business structure that protects business owners from having personal responsibility for the business's liabilities and debts.

How do I write a letter of explanation to the IRS? ›

According to the IRS, your letter should include the following:
  1. Taxpayer's name, address, and contact information.
  2. A statement expressing your desire to appeal IRS's findings to the Office of Appeals.
  3. The tax period in question.
  4. A list of the items you do not agree with and the corresponding reasons.
May 17, 2022

Why would the IRS send a certified letter to a business? ›

The IRS sends notices and letters for the following reasons: You have a balance due. You are due a larger or smaller refund. We have a question about your tax return.

What happens when you get a certified letter from the IRS? ›

The IRS may send you a certified letter if there are issues with your tax return or other tax forms regarding your personal information. In this certified letter, the IRS will likely ask you to complete its identity verification process.


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