Step-by-step guide: How to renew your ITIN number

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Step-by-step guide: How to renew your ITIN number

You might already know the answer to, “what is an ITIN,” but do you know the difference between an ITIN vs SSN? One of the ways in which the Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) differs from Social Security number (SSN) is that they don’t last forever. If you’ve received a notification that your ITIN will expire, don’t delay getting started on the ITIN renewal application process. Like the procedure to get a new ITIN, renewing requires specific supporting documentation and takes up to 11 weeks to complete.

The good news is you can still file your federal income tax return while your ITIN application is being processed. However, any refunds or other tax credits due to you will be held until your ITIN or individual tax identification number is updated.

We’ve put together this guide to walk you through the three steps required to renew your ITIN. We’ll also discuss how to know when your ITIN is going to expire.

3 steps for renewal

One frequently asked question is how to renew my ITIN number? If you remember when you first applied for your ITIN, this process will seem very familiar.

There are three main steps you’ll need to follow, including:

Step #1: Gather documents

First, you’ll actually fill out the same IRS form you filed with your original ITIN application—the W-7. There’s a section on the form specifically for renewal so make sure you complete it.

Then, you’ll need to submit original identification documents or a certified copy of your proof of identity and foreign status documentation. Photocopies aren’t acceptable. You can use the same document you used for your initial ITIN application.

The accepted verification identification documents include:

  • Passport or national ID card
  • U.S. or foreign driver’s license
  • Civil birth certificate
  • U.S. state ID card
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services photo ID
  • Visa
  • U.S. or foreign military ID card
  • Foreign voter ID card
  • School records (students under 18)
  • Medical records (children under 6)

The one difference from your original application is you won’t need to include a federal income tax return with your paperwork. These are also the same documents you will need to have before following the steps on how to get an ITIN number.

Step #2: Submit application

Once you’ve collected everything you need, you have three options for submitting your application:

Option #1: Mail

Mail your materials to the IRS at the address listed on the W-7 form. Certified mail is best so you can track your envelope.

Option #2: Appointment

Make an appointment at an IRS Taxpayer Assistance Center. They can verify your documents so that you don’t have to mail sensitive materials to the IRS.

Option #3: Work with a CAA

Certified Acceptance Agent (CAA) can assist you with filling out the required paperwork and certify your supporting documentation so you can avoid sending valuable personal papers through the mail.

Step #3: Wait for processing

It can take anywhere from 7 to 11 weeks for your paperwork to be processed. Between January 1st and April 15th, it’ll take longer as this is the peak period for ITIN applications. You can still file your income taxes while you’re waiting for the renewal to go through.

When do you need to renew your ITIN?

When it’s time to renew your ITIN, the IRS will mail you a notice. However, we know sometimes things get lost in the mail or you may have moved since your last filing. In this case, you should double-check and see if you must renew.

The most recent guidance from the IRS lists several scenarios that require an ITIN renewal. They include:

  • ITINs with 88 as middle digits – ITINs with 88 in the middle (9xx-88-xxxx) expired at the end of December 2020.
  • Some numbers issued before 2013 – If your ITIN has the middle digits: 90, 91, 92, or 94-99, and it was issued before 2013 and you’ve not already had to renew it, you must do so now.
  • Not used for 2017-20 tax returns – Those ITINs that haven’t been used for a federal tax return in the last three years must also be renewed.
  • Previously expired ITINs – There are also several older sets of ITINs that expired previously. If you’ve not filed a federal tax return in many years, your number may belong to one of these sets. They include those with the following middle digits:
  • 83-87 expired in 2019
  • 73-77, 81-82 in 2018
  • 70-72, 80 in 2017
  • 78-79 in 2016

Check your CP565

If you can’t remember when your ITIN was issued, you’ll find the date on the CP565 form you received when your ITIN was assigned. If you no longer have this IRS form, you can call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 for assistance.


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