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Foreign workers that can’t get Social Security numbers, be sure your ITIN remains good, says IRS

For those with Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers, it’s important to check the status of your number, as some are due to expire.

“Those are numbers that are given to people who must file a tax return, but can’t get a Social Security number,” said Michael Devine with the Internal Revenue Service. “That’s what that’s for. This year, about 2 million of the ITINs will expire.”

Unlike Social Security numbers, ITINs expire.

“Anyone who has not used an ITIN on a tax return for the last three years, or, if they have ITINs with middle numbers in the 80 range, 83 to 87, those are all going to expire,” said Devine.

In order to have a functioning ITIN, you must file a form W-7, if you meet all the other criteria.

“If you use an expired ITIN number on a tax return, the IRS will process it, but you won’t get everything you should, like refunds and deductions,” said Devine.

To help taxpayers, the IRS offers a variety of informational materials, including flyers and fact sheets, available in several languages, including English, Spanish, Traditional Chinese, Russian, Vietnamese, Korean and Haitian/Creole on IRS.gov.

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