IRS Urges Business Contact Updates to Avoid Identity Theft

update business contactIf your business receives a letter in the mail from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in August, the chances are good it has to do with a new campaign by the IRS concerning identity theft.


The migration of businesses and individuals to the online world exponentially exploded the number of opportunities for identity theft. The safety and security of your business or personal identity is only as strong as the weakest link in your digital supply chains. Let’s not forget the seminal hack of Target in 2014 that occurred through the stolen credentials of its HVAC vendor.


In 2021, ransomware hacks have been making front page news, and the trend runs unabated. Because of the ease by which criminals who really want to hack your system, or steal your identity can do so, the IRS is stepping up. The IRS is asking businesses to update their Employer Identification Number (EIN) within 60 days of any change in the contact information for the responsible party for your company.


The “responsible party” of any business, organization, or estate is generally the named party responsible for the entity, its assets, or its services. This could be a principal officer, a grantor, or trustor, or other fiduciary.


Too often, the responsible party for the EIN of an entity is long outdated. When the IRS identifies a suspicious filing or action on behalf of a business or other entity, inaccurate contact information slows the process by which the IRS can verify the action with the appropriate corporate or entity representative.


As a result, the IRS is sending letters to approximately 100,000 businesses, charities, trusts and estates and other entities that hold EINs. A couple of things to know about EINs include:

  • Applications for an EIN can be sent to the IRS in the mail, online, or via fax.
  • The responsible party for an EIN must be a natural person, except in the case of a government entity.
  • An EIN is used only for the purposes of tax filings. If your business has EINs that are no longer in use, it is important to close the account with the IRS.


Bottom line? Review your EIN contact for accuracy. When the contact name changes, notify the IRS within 60 days and save the IRS some time trying to identify a fraudulent tax filing involving your organization.


Tax attorneys deliver experienced representation when you face a tax controversy

The legal team at Robert J. Fedor, Esq., LLC represents business and individual clients responding to allegations of tax fraud, or involved in a tax litigation. When you need experienced tax advice, call 800-579-0997 or contact us. We serve clients locally and internationally from offices in Chicago and Cleveland.


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