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How To Know If A TIN ID Is Legit Or Not?

A simple guide to check if a taxpayer identification number (TIN) is legit and things to consider when validating a TIN.

If you’re a business owner, you would use TIN matching to validate the identities of your vendors, employees, and other payees. And if you’re a self-employed individual in the gig economy, you would use TIN matching to validate the identity of the entity that is requesting to work with you (or your entity). 

Regardless of the use case, Taxpayer identification number (TIN) matching is one of the most important tools to establish tax compliance because it allows you to validate the real identity of the entity or individual.

And today, we will be discussing the simple practice of TIN matching which allows us to check if a TIN ID is legit or not. 

So, let’s get to it.

Defining TIN

TIN is a common abbreviation for Taxpayer Identification Number. It’s a unique combination of letters and numbers assigned to individuals and entities for the purpose of identification. While an individual has a social security number for the purpose of identification, an entity will have a TIN. 

A TIN is a very broad terminology and it comes in a variety of forms. For example, social security number (SSN), employer identification number (EIN), property tax identification number (PTIN), individual taxpayer identification number (ITIN), and more. Regardless of the varied names, a TIN’s functionality is fundamental to its self-explanatory name – identification.

It allows you to identify an entity or an individual per the corresponding identification number.

Defining TIN Matching

At the time of TIN registration, the IRS obtains your legal name per the records of the social security administration and assigns a unique identification number called ‘TIN’. This is the official record that the IRS has to identify and track your income, tax filings, and related regulatory activity. 

This TIN and legal name are used for identity validation by third parties. 

For example, if you’re a self-employed individual and a local business wants to hire you for a pre-defined term, the hiring entity will verify your TIN and legal name per the IRS records to check if the provided details match the IRS records. If the details match the official records, it’s a TIN match. 

This process of obtaining TINs, validating the information against the real-time records of the IRS is known as TIN matching. 

How To Check A TIN ID 

Previously, businesses had to wait for hours before they could see the TIN match results for the searched TIN queries. However, times have evolved and so did technology. Tax1099 brings to you the fastest way to check and verify a TIN in just a few seconds. 

You can check a TIN against the IRS TIN match portal here

However, we recommend checking your TINs with Tax1099’s real-time TIN matching tool – a super fast way to check TINs in 30 seconds or less. 

Why do we recommend Tax1099’s real-time TIN matching tool?

  • Faster turnaround time (30 seconds or less) 
  • Real-time TIN match results
  • TINs are checked against the source data list (IRS)
  • Check 100,000+ TINs in a minute (no more waiting!) 
  • Auto-generated TIN reports for mismatch segmentation

How To Know If A TIN ID Is Legit 

When searching for a TIN, you may come across a variety of alerts or notifications from the TIN search engine. Be it IRS or Tax1099, it is important to understand and consider the following possibilities. 

  • TIN Match = the entered TIN + legal name match the TIN + legal name records of the IRS 
  • Invalid TIN = the entered TIN + legal name do not exist in the IRS records 
  • Incorrect TIN = the provided TIN + legal name are entered incorrectly. The records exist but the details are not accurate enough to give a result. 

To prevent the above incorrect and invalid scenarios, we recommend the following prior to TIN Match 

  • Send a W-9 Form to the payee to obtain accurate details
  • Double-check the entered details
  • Look out for simple errors in typing

You can prevent such errors in the TIN match process by automating your TIN match with Tax1099’s API and bulk TIN match services. 

Your bulk data will be imported directly to our powerful platform to prevent errors that usually occur in manual data entry. 

The TINs and the legal name details are then validated against the real-time data lists of the IRS.

Learn More About Bulk TIN Match |  Learn More About Tax1099 API