Union County Surrogate James LaCorte cautioned residents to avoid online companies that charge fees of up to $250 to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN).

“An EIN must be ordered directly from the Internal Revenue Service, and there is no fee,” said Surrogate LaCorte. “I am issuing this warning because it has come to my attention that there are some services advertising on line that they will acquire EIN numbers for you. Some of these unscrupulous operations are charging as much as $250.00 for this ‘service,’ which the IRS provides for free.”

LaCorte urged residents to be vigilant when ordering an EIN online.

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“When you look up EIN on line, the responses that include a small ‘Ad’ box are businesses, and you will be charged a fee,” said LaCorte. “If you go into one of those sites, you will see a fee attached to the submission with the application, which is another indication that it is a business and not the IRS. Take your time in analyzing each website and make certain that when you apply it is directly with the IRS.”

Residents who are applying for an EIN online must visit the official IRS website, irs.gov, and go to the page titled, “Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) Online.”

The full web address for the EIN page is: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/apply-for-an-employer-identification-number-ein-online.

“I am always concerned when the Public is taken advantage of, especially with incidents like this,” said LaCorte. “If you have any concerns please call my office at 908-527-4280.”

LaCorte encouraged residents to inform themselves on the estate process.

“On the Surrogate’s web site under ‘Surrogate Brochures’ you will find a useful brochure on Gathering and Distributing the Assets of the Estate,” he said. “It will explain about EIN numbers, L-8’s & L-9’s, Tax Waivers and information to connect with the State of New Jersey Treasurer and Taxation Division for important information regarding filing taxes and inheritance tax.”

To download the brochure visit ucnj.org/surrogate/surrogates-brochures.

For information on all Union County Surrogate programs visit online at ucnj.org/surrogate or call 908-527-4280.

For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email info@ucnj.org or use the online Contact Form.

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