Good question! According to a new law under the PATH Act, taxpayers who have not used an ITIN on a tax return in the last three years must renew their ITIN before filing a 2016 tax return. Also, those who have ITINs that were issued before 2013 will be expiring on a rolling schedule based on the ITIN’s middle digits. Not renewing an expired ITIN before filing a tax return could result in a delayed refund or ineligibility for certain tax credits like the Child Tax Credit and the American Opportunity Tax Credit until the ITIN is renewed. Keep reading to find out if you need to renew your tax ID number.
Which ITIN holders will need to renew their ITINs beginning in October of 2016?
ITINs will begin renewing on a rolling schedule. No action is needed by ITIN holders if they do not need to file a tax return in 2017. The first ITINs to expire will be those with the middle digits of 78 and 79. The IRS began sending letters to these individuals explaining the renewal steps in August, so if your ITIN’s middle digits are 78 or 79, you should have received a letter. If not, be on the lookout.
Who Needs to Renew?
- ITINs not used on a federal income tax return in the last 3 years (covering 2013, 2014 or 2015) will not be valid to use on returns as of January 1, 2017
- ITINs issued before 2013 with the middle digits of 78 and 79 (Example: 9XX-78-XXXX / will start expiring in 2017 on a rolling schedule)
- Note: If your ITIN does not have a middle digit of 78 and 79, stay tuned. The expiration and renewal schedule will be released at a future date.
Renewal Rolling Schedule:
- ITINs issued before 2008 will remain in effect until January 1, 2017
- ITINs issued in 2008 will remain in effect until January 1, 2018
- ITINs issued in 2009 or 2010 will remain in effect until January 1, 2019
- ITINs issued in 2011 or 2012 will remain in effect until January 1, 2020
How do I renew my ITIN?
If you meet the requirements above and need to renew your ITIN, complete Form W-7, Application for IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number. ITIN renewals start October 1, 2016. Unlike other ITIN applications, an ITIN renewal does not require you to attach your tax return, so don’t worry about submitting Form 1040. You will however still need to submit other certified documents. To be sure you meet the requirements, review the instructions for Form W-7 thoroughly.
You can also renew your ITIN for free with a Liberty Tax® Certified Acceptance Agent. Instead of mailing your forms and documents to the IRS, our certified agents can verify the authenticity of your supporting documents. You’ll receive step-by-step help with your ITIN renewal, and you’ll take your documents with you when you’re finished. Find a participating Liberty Tax® location to make an appointment.
How long does an ITIN renewal take to process?
It takes the IRS approximately 7 weeks to process an ITIN renewal. To check the status of your ITIN, you can call the IRS toll-free at 800-829-1040 if you are in the United States or 267-941-1000 (not a toll-free number) if you are outside the United States.
Can I renew my family’s ITINs too?
Yes! Luckily the IRS has taken steps to ease this process for taxpayers such as not requiring a tax return with renewal submissions and a family renewal option. If you receive a renewal letter from the IRS due to your middle ITIN digits being 78 or 79, you can choose to renew your family’s ITINs too instead of waiting to renew each one individually over the next few years. The family renewal is limited to you (the tax filer), your spouse, and any dependents claimed on your tax return.
For more information on ITIN renewals, check out the IRS website.