North Carolina Tax ID (EIN) Number Application Guide

Does your business need a tax ID (EIN)? Chances are, it does, but do you know how to get one? There are many business types, sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), corporations, and non profits need a federal tax ID number. Thankfully, with the right resources and knowledge, it shouldn’t take you long to get the materials you need to become operational. This guide will teach you what your tax ID is, why you need one, and most importantly, how to get one for your North Carolina business.


Steps to Getting a North Carolina Tax ID Number

  1. Prepare All Relevant Business Information
  2. Apply for a North Carolina Tax ID Online: The Preferred Method
  3. Alternative Ways to Apply for a North Carolina Tax ID: Phone, Mail or Fax
  4. Do I Need a Tax ID Number for My Business?
  5. How Do You Apply for a State Tax ID Number?
  6. Everything You Need to Know About Your North Carolina State Tax ID Number

1. Prepare All Relevant Business Information

Getting a tax ID requires you to register your business with the government, so you’ll need to provide some information on your business in the application. It’s important that this information is accurate and comprehensive, and you’ll save time if you prepare it before you begin the application process.

You won’t need much information to complete the application. For starters, you’ll need to collect the full legal names and legal addresses of your business’s founding members. You’ll also need to get their social security numbers (SSNs). With this information, you’ll be able to complete the application in a timely manner, usually in a matter of minutes.

2. Apply for a North Carolina Tax ID Online: The Preferred Method

You can get a North Carolina tax ID in one of several ways, all of which require you to fill out an application with questions about your business. However, some of these methods are more advantageous to business owners than others.

For example, there are several traditional methods for tax ID application available, including applying over the phone with a live representative or mailing in a paper application. However, these methods have been rendered more or less obsolete, thanks to the availability of online applications.

Now, entrepreneurs and business owners can access a tax ID application online, using any device with an internet connection. Because the form is easy to access and read, it should be fairly straightforward. If you have all the information on your business’s founding members gathered, it should only take you 5 minutes to complete. When done, you’ll receive an email in under an hour with your tax ID number attached, making this far and away the fastest application method.


3. Alternative Ways to Apply for a North Carolina Tax ID: Phone, Mail or Fax

Though applying online is easier, faster, and more accessible, there are some traditional application methods available. Filling out a paper application will require you to answer most of the same questions as the online application, but will take more time to fill out. When done, you can mail or fax it in. You could also answer questions through conversation, speaking with a live representative over the phone.

However, these methods don’t really offer a unique benefit. Instead, they take a long time to get you your tax ID, sometimes up to 4 to 6 weeks.

4. Do I Need a Tax ID Number for My Business?

You may wonder whether your business needs a tax ID number in the first place, especially since there are so many similar, yet distinct terms describing these numbers. First and foremost, there’s your federal tax ID (EIN) number. This is a 9-digit number uniquely given to your business when you register it with the federal government. You may also hear it called an employer identification number, or EIN. That’s because this number is required by any business that plans on hiring employees, or one that has multiple members. You’ll also need this number for most financial applications, like if you’re trying to open a business bank account, get a loan for your business, or open a line of business credit.

In addition to needing a federal tax ID, many businesses will also require a North Carolina state tax ID. This number, as the name implies, is distributed by the state government of North Carolina rather than the federal government. It’s required for sales tax purposes, so you’ll need one if you’re selling taxable goods and services, or regulated goods that qualify for excise taxes.

5. How Do You Apply for a State Tax ID Number?

If you need a North Carolina state tax ID number, as most North Carolina businesses will, you’ll need to know how to obtain one. This process mirrors the process for applying for your federal tax ID number, so it will seem familiar to you.

First, you’ll need to acquire a federal tax ID number if you haven’t already. You can do this via the online application, so you can get it in less than an hour. Once you have that, you can begin applying for your North Carolina state tax ID number. You can choose to apply for this through a traditional method, like phone, mail, or fax, but as you’ve likely come to expect, applying online is the superior option. By applying online, you’ll access an application that’s much easier to read and fill out, but more importantly, your application will process faster. In most cases, you’ll get your state tax ID in 4 to 6 weeks.

6. Everything You Need to Know About Your North Carolina State Tax ID Number

Your North Carolina business will probably need both a federal tax ID number and a North Carolina state tax ID number. The former is necessary for any business that hires employees, has multiple members, applies for a loan or line of credit, or will need to apply for a business license or permit. The latter is required of any business that hires employees in the state of North Carolina, or will owe sales or excise taxes. You can see how these criteria can overlap.

If you need a North Carolina state tax ID number, your first step is obtaining a federal tax ID number through the online application. Once you have that, you can answer some questions about your business and its founding members online, and receive your tax ID in just 4 to 6 weeks.