8000 - Miscellaneous Statutes and Regulations
DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY INSTRUCTIONS
FINANCIAL RECORDKEEPING AND REPORTING OF CURRENCY
Instructions Relating to Taxpayer Identification Numbers
On June 30, 1972, instructions were issued on this subject and published in the Federal Register (37 FR 13279 (1972)). These procedures have been revised in accordance with amendments to the regulations issued on December 8, 1972, and published in the Federal Register (37 FR 26517 (1972)).
With respect to each deposit or share account opened after June 30, 1972, by a person residing or doing business in the United States or a citizen of the United States, each bank, savings and loan association, building and loan association, credit union, or broker or dealer in securities must, within 45 days from the date the account is opened, secure and maintain a record of the taxpayer identification number of the person maintaining the account.
For individuals, the taxpayer identification number is his social security number. For corporations, partnerships, and other entities it is the IRS employer identification number. If an account is opened in more than one individual's name, the fiancial institution is required to secure and maintain the social security number of at least one individual having a financial interest in that account.
In determining the proper identification number to be obtained for accounts opened in more than one name, the financial institution should follow the regulations and rulings issued by the Internal Revenue Service under section 6109 of the Internal Revenue Code. The following guidelines have been issued by IRS under that section:
With respect to accounts opened for trusts, charitable organizations, clubs and similar entities the financial institution should secure the employer identification number of the entity. An employer identification number should be obtained for this purpose even though an organization might not otherwise require one.
A taxpayer identification number need not be secured in the following instances: (i) Accounts for public funds opened by agencies and instrumentalities of Federal, State, local or foreign governments, (ii) accounts for aliens who are (a) ambassadors, ministers, career diplomatic, or consular officers, or (b) naval, military or other attaches of foreign embassies and legations, and for the members of their immediate families, (iii) accounts for aliens who are accredited representatives to international organizations entitled to enjoy privileges, exemptions, and immunities as an international organization under the International Organizations Immunities Act of December 29, 1945 (22 U.S.C. Sec. 288), and for the members of their immediate families (a list of such organizations appears in title 19, section 148.87 (formerly section 10.30a), Code of Federal Regulations), (iv) aliens temporarily residing in the United States for a period not to exceed 180 days, (v) aliens not engaged in a trade or business in the United States who are attending a recognized college or university or any training program supervised or conducted by any agency of the Federal Government, (vi) unincorporated subordinate units of a tax-exempt central organization which are covered by a group exemption letter, (vii) interest-bearing accounts maintained by a person 18 years of age opened as part of a school thrift savings program, provided the annual interest does not exceed $10, and (vii) Christmas Club, vacation club, and similar installment savings programs provided the annual interest does not exceed $10. In instances (vii) and (viii), the bank shall, within 15 days following the end of any calendar year in which the interest accrued in that year exceeds $10, use its best efforts to secure and maintain the appropriate taxpayer identification number or application form therefor.
If the customer does not have a social security number or is unaware of his number, he can authorize the Social Security Administration to furnish his identification number to the financial institution. This authorization may be printed or stamped on the back of Form SS-5 (Application for Social Security No.), in the space immediately above the legend, "For Bureau of Data Processing and Accounts Use". The authorization must contain the following language:
Please furnish my SSN to:
The customer should complete Form SS-5 and sign the statement on the back of the form. The financial institution should mail the completed form to the Social Security Administration in the preaddressed envelope provided and retain a copy (duplicate or photocopy) of the application until the number is received.
The Social Security Administration does not require the Form SS-5 or the authorization statement to be signed by a parent or guardian even though the customer is under 18 years of age.
A similar procedure may be used to obtain employer identification numbers. Upon proper authorization by the applicant on the back of part 2 on the first page of Form SS-4 (Application for Employer Identification No.), the IRS will furnish the employer identification number to both the applicant and the financial institution.
Financial institutions may obtain supplies of Form SS-5 and preaddressed envelopes from their nearest Social Security Office, and supplies of Form SS-4 and preaddressed envelopes from any Internal Revenue Service Center or district office.
In the event that a financial institution has been unable to secure the identification required herein with respect to an account within the 45-day period specified, it shall nevertheless not be deemed to be in violation of this requirement if (i) it has made a reasonable effort to secure such identification, and (ii) it maintains a list containing the names, addresses, and account numbers of those persons from whom it has been unable to secure such identification, and makes the names, addresses, and account numbers of those persons available to the Secretary as directed by him.
A reasonable effort to obtain a taxpayer identification number should include the mailing of a written request. The request should inform the customer that the bank is required to maintain, for the use of the Department of the Treasury, a list of customers who have failed to supply the bank with a TIN within the 45-day period.
The 45-day period provided for shall be extended where the customer has applied for an employer identification number or social security number on Form SS-4 or SS-5 until such time as the customer has had a reasonable opportunity to secure the number and furnish it to the institution.
Dated: January 30, 1973.
Treasury Notice of Revision of Instructions
On January 31, 1973, instructions were issued on this subject and published in the Federal Register (38 FR 3341 (1973)). These instructions have been revised, herein, to reflect changes in Social Security Administration procedures governing the issuance of social security numbers.
The Social Security Administration now generally requires evidence of age, citizenship, and identity of applicants for social security numbers. Therefore, the Social Security Administration will no longer honor requests for numbers by financial institutions on behalf of customers.
Financial institutions must, within forty-five days after an account is opened, secure and maintain a record of taxpayer identification numbers of customers opening share or deposit accounts after June 30, 1972. For individuals, the taxpayer identification number is his social security number. If an account is opened in more than one individual's s name, the financial institution should secure and maintain the social security number of at least one individual having a financial interest in that account. For corporations, partnerships, and other entities, it is the IRS employer identification number. Instances in which a taxpayer identification number need not be secured remain as printed in the Federal Register (38 FR 3341 (1973)).
If a financial institution has been unable to secure the required identification number within the forty-five day period, it shall be in compliance with this requirement if (i) it has made a reasonable effort to secure the number, and (ii) it maintains a list containing the names, addresses, and account numbers of those persons for whom it has been unable to secure an identification number and makes the names, addresses, and account numbers of those persons available to the Secretary as directed by him.
A reasonable effort to obtain a taxpayer identification number should include the mailing of a written request. The request should inform the customer that the bank is required to maintain, for the use of the Department of the Treasury, a list of customers who have failed to supply the financial institution with a TIN within the forty-five day period.
Dated: August 30, 1974.
[Source: 39 Fed. Reg. 32336, September 6, 1974]