A company can apply for an EIN for free online at the Internal Revenue Service website. This is the preferred method of the IRS, and the company receives its EIN immediately upon submission of the application.
The online application is available to any business whose principal office is located in the United States or a U.S. Territory. The online application uses an interview-style questionnaire rather than the traditional Form SS-4 and includes links help topics and definitions of key words, so separate instructions are not needed. The company can then download, save and print a confirmation notice. Companies can still apply for EINs by fax, mail or telephone using a completed Form SS-4, and these services are also free. International applicants must apply for an EIN by telephone.