How do you fill in the W-7 form to obtain an ITIN?

The best way to complete the W-7 form is to use the IRS’s instructions for Form W-7. It’s an official, detailed, step by step guide to completing the W-7 form.

The best resource to use when completing the W-7 is the IRS’s instructions for Form W-7. The first few pages (of the PDF version) explain the purpose of the form, who should use it, the supporting documents, and how to submit the application.

Page 6 begins with the actual procedure to complete the form, starting with the checkbox that this is a new ITIN application. Next comes the reason for the form, which will depend on your supporting document. If you’re submitting the application for withholdings on royalties, for example by using the Amazon letter, you’d check box a and h and completing the field beside h for the specific exception (“Exception 1(d). Passive income — third-party withholding or tax treaty benefits”.)

Once the reason is complete, the treaty country and treaty number can be filled in: “Canada” and “Article XII (12)” if you’re a Canadian resident applying under the withholding strategy.

With that, your personal information can be filled in, using “N/A” on any blank lines. Assuming that you’re applying under the withholding strategy, you should include your Canadian address rather than your US address, since the whole point of getting the ITIN is ostensibly to demonstrate that you need to be exempt from withholding taxes as a foreign resident.

With a signature, your W-7 form should be complete and ready for submission with your supporting documents.


Last updated 11 May 2019. Any questions?
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