Publication 4857: Top Reasons Why Your Form W-7 Is Suspended or Rejected

Form W-7, Application for IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, is used to apply for or renew an ITIN. This publication highlights the top 10 reasons why a Form W-7 might be suspended or rejected by the IRS. By understanding these common errors, you can ensure a smooth application process.

Top 10 Reasons for Form W-7 Suspension or Rejection

Reason #1: Incorrect Supporting Documentation

The documents you submit to prove your identity and foreign status must be from the list of 13 acceptable documents approved by the IRS. All documents must be current and unexpired.

Reason #2: Missing Certificate of Accuracy

If you are applying through a Certifying Acceptance Agent (CAA), a valid Certificate of Accuracy (COA) form (Form W-7 (COA)) must be attached to your application.

Reason #3: Improper Documentation

The IRS only accepts original documents or certified copies issued by the government agency that originally issued them. CAAs can certify most documents for you, with some exceptions like foreign military IDs, passports, and birth certificates for dependents.

Reason #4: Missing or Invalid Signature

Signing requirements depend on your age:

Under 18: You, a parent, court-appointed guardian (with court documents), or a representative with a valid power of attorney can sign.

18 or older: You, a court-appointed guardian, a parent, or another authorized individual can sign. If someone other than you signs, they must print their name, relationship to you, and attach any required documentation (court papers or Form 2848).

Reason #5: Missing Documentation to Prove Identity and Foreign Status

If you are not submitting a passport, you must provide a combination of two other acceptable documents from the IRS list. Dependents on a tax return must also prove U.S. residency unless their passport shows a date of entry or they are dependents of U.S. military stationed overseas.

Reason #6: Missing Date of Entry into the U.S

If required, Line 6d must include the complete date you entered the U.S. for the purpose you are requesting the ITIN.

Reason #7: Missing Foreign Address

If you select reason "b" on Form W-7 (to file a U.S. tax return and not claimed on another's return), a complete foreign address is required on Line 3. Otherwise, at least enter your foreign country of origin.

Reason #8: Missing Country of Citizenship

Enter the full name(s) of the country (or countries) you are a citizen of on Line 6a. Do not abbreviate.

Reason #9: Missing U.S. Person Information

If you select reason "d" (dependent of a U.S. citizen or resident alien) or "e" (spouse of a U.S. citizen or resident alien filing jointly), enter the full name and Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) of the U.S. citizen or resident alien in the designated space.

Reason #10: Incorrect Renewal Information

When renewing an ITIN, ensure the ITIN and name you enter on Lines 6e and 6f match IRS records. If your legal name has changed, attach documentation like a marriage certificate or court order to support the change.

By following these tips, you can increase your chances of having your Form W-7 application accepted quickly and efficiently.