Having an EIN shows the IRS your tax status and the structure of your company. You may be required to present your EIN for several reasons. Another company or business partner may request your EIN to verify some of our company information. Alternatively, if you’re in the process of applying for a business bank account or business loan, you will be asked to confirm your EIN

Those who require EINs will verify it against the IRS’ records to ensure your business’ legitimacy. It’s therefore vital that you provide them with the correct information. However, mistakes happen and there are several reasons why your EIN may not be validating, which we’ll talk about below. 

The most common reasons why your EIN isn’t validating

Incorrect EIN entry

EINs are 9-digit numbers and it’s very easy to accidentally enter an incorrect number here and there. If at first you or someone else notices something erroneous regarding your EIN, the best thing to do is to make sure that you have entered the EIN correctly. More often than not, the problem is easily solvable just by checking the number itself. 

Duplicate EIN and its implications

Only one EIN is assignable per business entity. An EIN Error 101 pops up when the IRS spots another business sharing your name, or if it is similar to another business name. If your EIN submission triggers this Error 101, don’t worry too much. You just need to give it another go and re-file for your EIN using the SS-4 form. 

IRS system technical difficulties

As with any organization, mistakes can happen. If you’ve already checked that the EIN you’ve entered is completely correct and you’re not getting a 101 error, then the IRS may be experiencing some technical difficulties on their side. If this happens, leave the system alone for a few minutes then come back and try again.

Changes in business structure or ownership

One of the other common reasons for an EIN not working is that there have been structures made to the business and you’re trying to use an old EIN. When a business undergoes structural change, a new EIN is required. Before proceeding, you should double-check which is the correct EIN registered to your organization. 

Troubleshooting steps for EIN problems

In the event of your EIN not validating you can try some of these quick and easy steps to solve the issue. 

Verifying EIN and IRS records

Try finding a platform where you can verify your EIN. You can try doing this directly via the IRS, as their records will confirm the correct EIN assigned to the relevant entity. However, if you cannot spare the time to do so, then using an EIN lookup and verification platform can also help you obtain the correct EIN. 

Checking for system outages or updates

If you suspect there is a problem with the system you’re using to input your EIN, then it is worth running the necessary checks and updates to see if there is something wrong internally. If you suspect there is an error with the IRS system, then you can also give the IRS a call to see if there is something wrong on their side. 

Reviewing your application for errors

The first thing you should do when troubleshooting your EIN error is to check there have been no accidental mistakes made either in the application or when entering your EIN on a form or into a database. This will be the quickest way to rectify any errors should they be caused by human error. Another method is by simply calling the IRS


If you find yourself running into problems with your EIN, it’s always best to address these as quickly as possible, especially if you encounter a 101 error. Getting to the bottom of these issues at your earliest convenience will allow you to proceed with whatever you require your EIN for, and will also ensure that you remain compliant with up-to-date information on the IRS’ records.