What date to use as business "start date" when filing for an EIN?


My LLC was formed as of yesterday. I am now in the process of applying for an EIN through the IRS. The application asks for my business start date. I am an online business, and have not technically "opened my doors" for business yet and am not sure when exactly that will take place as my website is not quite ready to launch yet.

With that said, what should I put for my business start date? Should I use my LLC formation date as the start date? Should I just wait until I actually open my doors for business to get my EIN? Not exactly sure how this all works, any information is appreciated.

Getting Started LLC EIN

asked Mar 15 '12 at 08:11
63 points
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3 Answers


what should I put for my business start date?

In terms of filing for your EIN, the business start date is the day you formed your business (i.e. the day you registered your business with the state). It's not when your website goes live, or when you make your first sale. You can make an educated guess as to when those things will happen, but you can't say with 100% certainty when they will.

Should I just wait until I actually open my doors for business to get my EIN?

No. Get your EIN now. You'll need your EIN now to get certain things going for your business.

  • Example 1: You'll need an EIN to open a business bank account, and you'll want to open your business bank account before you launch your online business. You'll have expenses leading up to when your business goes live, and you'll want those expenses to come out of your business account, not your personal bank account.
  • Example 2: An online business implies a website. Depending on the nature of your business you may want to get an SSL certificate for your website. You may need to provide your EIN to the SSL certificate provider before they will issue you a certificate.

This fairly detailed document created by the IRS may be of help to you: Understanding Your EIN

answered Mar 19 '12 at 04:22
Zuly Gonzalez
9,194 points


No need to get an EIN if you don't want to, unless you're planning on hiring employees or registering your business as something other than a sole proprietor or single member LLC. Then, you just file Schedule C under your own SSN.

answered Oct 24 '13 at 17:16
Kolokol Kvass
11 points


The easiest thing to do is simply use yesterday's date, the date you formed the LLC.

answered Mar 15 '12 at 10:57
Jonny Boats
4,848 points

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