Individual Taxpayer Identification Number or ITIN as it is commonly referred to is the number given by the Internal Revenue Service of the United States of America to help track, record and profit from wages being earned in the United States without proper documentation – like a Social Security Card. An ITIN can be a very valuable tool for undocumented workers as it provides a reasonable opportunity to file income taxes. Additionally, an ITIN has become commonly accepted by banks, credit card companies and other financial institutions across the country.
Big business has realized there is a large population of undocumented workers and others in the United States that are unable to secure a Social Security card for any number of reasons, and accepting an ITIN gets these individuals into the economic system. Paying what is owed, borrowing as needed, and earning what they can. Periodically, the ITIN comes under fire. Typically the trouble arises on the State level with local government dealing with abuses of the ITIN number. Most recently, it was discovered that the Internal Revenue Service has been sitting idle while undocumented workers used an ITIN to file a tax form and claim several children as dependents. In actuality, these children live in Mexico in most cases, yet the government of the United States generates a large tax return based on the information given with very little care given.
As the population of undocumented workers in the United States continues to assimilate into our mainstream system of commerce, the ITIN is sure to be at the heart of many discussions.