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June 22, 2012: IRS Announces Interim Heightened ITIN Application Standards

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced interim changes to its Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (“ITIN”) application program designed to boost integrity in the process while minimizing taxpayer impact. Under the new standard, the IRS will no longer accept notarized copies of required documentation, such as passports and birth certificates, for persons requiring an ITIN to file a U.S. tax return. Going forward, the IRS will only accept original documentation or copies certified by the issuing agency. Along with applicants filing directly, these rules also apply to ITIN applications processed by “Certifying Acceptance Agents,” like Deloitte.

The new policy applies to most individuals applying for an ITIN using the Form W-7 with the exception of military spouses and dependents without a social security number, and nonresident aliens applying for an ITIN other than to file a U.S. tax return. For example, an applicant requiring an ITIN to claim tax treaty benefits on a Form W-8BEN or those requiring an ITIN for information reporting purposes follow the old documentation standards. However, ITIN applications falling within this “exception” category that are accompanied by a U.S. tax return will be subject to the new interim standards.  Please refer to the Form W-7 instructions for a complete list of exceptions to obtaining an ITIN without having to file a U.S. tax return.

The new rules apply to ITIN applications received on or after June 22, 2012 through the end of the current calendar year. The IRS plans on issuing final rules before the 2013 filing season. The IRS has indicated that some taxpayers with pending applications may be required to provide additional documentation, upon request.

Please refer to details from the Internal Revenue Service announcement IR-2012-62.

For more information please contact FATCA Leader or click here.

As used in this document, “Deloitte” means Deloitte Tax LLP, a subsidiary of Deloitte LLP. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte LLP and its subsidiaries. Certain services may not be available to attest clients under the rules and regulations of public accounting.

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