An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) is assigned by the Internal Revenue Service to individuals involved in a transaction which may be a taxable event in the United States, who are ineligible to receive a a U.S. Social Security Number. It is not valid for personal identification, does not entitle the individual to work in the U.S. or to receive U.S. Social Security benefits.
U.S. Embassies and Consulates are able to certify copies of foreign passports in relation to ITIN applications, but only for non-resident aliens applying for ITINs for the purpose of claiming tax treaty benefits (i.e. those applicants who are ticking “a” and “h” on the W-7 form). If you are applying for an ITIN for any other purpose, you will need to submit original documents, or apply from within the United States using an IRS ITIN Acceptance Agent. For further clarification, refer to the information on the IRS’s website.
Obtaining an ITIN from Abroad
Certifying your passport through the Consulates
These instructions are for applicants submitting their request for a certified copy of their passport by the U.S. Consulate to support their application for an ITIN (Form W-7). The applicant must mail the following items to our office.
- Completed Form W-7: Application for an ITIN
- A self-addressed Express Post envelope
- Current passport and one clear photocopy of their passport (Note: we cannot certify any other identity documents, such as drivers licenses)
- Applicable fee (found on the fees page under the heading of Certification)
Applications are only accepted by mail – they are not accepted in person. Mail the items above to the U.S. Consulate General serving your area.
Please allow approximately five working days for our office to process your request. We will return the items to the applicant in the envelope provided.
Using the IRS ITIN Acceptance Agent Program
Individuals in Australia can use the IRS ITIN Acceptance Agent program. Please see the information on the IRS’s website to locate an acceptance agent, and to contact them directly.
The applicant is required to mail their ITIN application with the certified copy of their passport to:
Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 149342
United States of America