Looking to obtain your Tax ID (EIN) Number in Louisiana? This short Louisiana Tax ID Application Guide will walk you through the basic steps you need to follow to apply for your Tax ID (EIN) Number in the state of Louisiana. Whether you own a Partnership, multi-member LLC, Corporation, Non-Profit, Trust or Estate, this guide will help you learn what you need to know to obtain your official IRS Tax ID Number within minutes.
- Prepare Required Information
- Apply for a Louisiana Tax ID Online
- Apply for a Louisiana Tax ID by Phone, Mail or Fax
- What Is a Louisiana State Tax ID Number?
- Do I Need a Federal EIN Number?
- How Do I Get a Louisiana State Tax ID Number?
You could proceed with the application immediately, gathering information as prompted to do so, but it’s much more efficient to take a few minutes to gather all that information upfront. In the application process, you’ll be prompted for several bits of information about you, your company, and your founding partners, so try to gather it in advance.
For starters, get the full legal names and addresses of you and all your founding members. You’ll also want to get their social security numbers (SSNs). And because this will register your business with the government, you’ll need to decide on your business’s legal name.
When you’re ready to apply for your tax ID, you’ll need to choose an application method. Most methods will follow the same general process- filling out an application and submitting it for processing- but there are some serious advantages to completing this process online.
Applying online is more convenient. As long as you have a digital device and an internet connection, you can access and complete the application. And if you have all the information we recommended gathering in the previous section, you should be able to answer those questions quickly, and with relative ease.
After you’ve submitted the application, you’ll have to wait for it to process. But if you’re applying online, that processing time should be an hour or less. At that point, you’ll be emailed your tax ID, so you can start using it for your business sooner (compared to more traditional methods).
Even though applying online is by far the most advantageous route, other methods of application do exist. You can apply over the phone by answering application questions in an interview-style format, or you can fill out an application on paper, then submitting it via mail or fax. Both of these methods take longer and are less convenient than applying online, but the real disadvantage is how long these application methods take to process. Applying via a traditional method can take up to 4 to 6 weeks to finish processing. Compared to the single hour it takes to process online, that’s egregious.
Terminology for tax ID numbers can get confusing. When most people talk about a “tax ID” in general, they’re referring to a federal tax ID number, which as the name suggests, applies at the federal level. This is also frequently referred to as an employer identification number (EIN), or federal EIN (FEIN).
However, you may also need a Louisiana state tax ID number, which applies at the state level. This is also occasionally referred to as a sales tax ID number, but this isn’t exactly accurate- nor is the moniker “state EIN.” This, like a federal tax ID number, is a unique ID number for your business, not unlike a social security number. Despite the similarities, these numbers are completely different, and are used for very different applications.
Your Louisiana state tax ID number is specifically used when hiring Louisiana employees. It’s also important for registering for Louisiana sales taxes (hence why it’s occasionally called a sales tax ID), and is used for registering for excise taxes as well. Most Louisiana businesses will need both a federal tax ID and a Louisiana state tax ID number.
How can you tell if your business needs an EIN number? Most Louisiana businesses will require a federal tax ID number, but there are some businesses that count as exceptions. For example, certain types of sole proprietorships and single-member LLCs may get away with not having one.
You’ll need an EIN if your business has more than one member, such as if it’s a partnership, a corporation, or an LLC with multiple members. EINs are also called employer identification numbers because they’re necessary if you’re going to hire employees- any business that hires employees must have one. In addition, EINs are important to have if you plan on building business credit, or if you’re applying for a business loan, or certain types of licenses, certifications, and permits.
It can also be advantageous to use an EIN in place of your own social security number for certain contracts and agreements with other companies. Even if you don’t absolutely need one, it may still be a good idea to get one- just in case.
So what about a Louisiana state tax ID? How can you tell if you need one, and how can you get one?
As mentioned earlier, you’ll need a Louisiana state tax ID if you’re going to hire employees in the state of Louisiana, or if you’re going to sell taxable goods and services in the state (since this is how you register for Louisiana sales taxes). You’ll also need one if you’re going to owe excise taxes, which apply to alcohol, tobacco, gasoline, and some other types of regulated products.
Fortunately, the process for getting a Louisiana state tax ID number is straightforward, especially if you apply online. Like with your federal tax ID number, you can apply online or through a traditional application method- though applying online is indisputably better. You’ll answer key questions about your business and founding members, and wait for the application to process. This processing period takes days to weeks- making it longer than the period for a federal tax ID- but is still much faster when you apply online.