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Invalid ID numbers will delay refunds.

According to an Internal Revenue service news release (IR 95-50), individual income tax returns that do not include valid Social Security numbers (SSNs) or IRS-assigned individual taxpayer identification numbers (ITINs) will be held up in processing, with all related claims possibly disallowed and the tax readjusted. The IRS also said that previously issued temporary identification numbers no longer are valid.

The IRS said taxpayers who are not U.S. citizens and do not have SSNs should apply for new ITINs as soon as possible. A taxpayer also must apply for an ITIN if he or she is claimed as a dependent by a U.S. citizen, married to a U.S. citizen who files a joint return, can be claimed as an exemption on a U.S. spouses return or is filing a U.S. tax return to claim a refund. Taxpayers whose returns have missing or incorrect numbers will be asked to call a special toll-free number. The IRS said that if a taxpayer in fact has a valid ID, the phone can should settle the matter.

How to file

U.S. citizens and foreign individuals legally entitled to work in the United States can obtain SSNs by filing Form SS-5, Application for Social Security Card. All others required to file U.S. tax returns will need to complete Form W-7, Individual Application for IRS Taxpayer Identification Number. A copy of form W-7 is available from the IRS by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676) or by dialing 703-487-4160 from a fax machine and requesting item no. 10229. A copy of the form also can be obtained electronically via the IRS World Wide Web site at http://www.irs.ustreas. gov or the IRS bulletin board at 703-321-8020.
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:identification numbers on tax returns
Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Feb 1, 1997
Previous Article:New rules for tax-exempt and government benefit plans.
Next Article:Property settlements.

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