Can I use someone else’s US taxpayer ID to apply for an EIN?

This article assumes that you founded the startup you’re submitting an EIN application for.

No, you can’t use someone else’s US taxpayer ID to apply for an EIN. The person applying for an EIN must qualify as their startup’s "responsible party", which the IRS defines as someone who controls, manages, and directs the startup. This means that the person who applies usually has to be one of the founders or officers.1 Entering a US taxpayer ID of someone that isn't a responsible party can have serious repercussions. Your application may be rejected by the IRS and, in the case of using a US taxpayer ID that is not your own, you may be committing perjury.

1. It’s possible for someone else to submit the EIN application on the responsible party’s behalf if they receive the proper authorization.

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