IRS releases new Form W-9 and Instructions for the Requester of Form W-9

September 2013
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On August 29, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released a new Form W-9, Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification and its instructions.  In addition, the Instructions to the Requester of Form W-9 were released on August 30, 2013.  The Form W-9 is one of several forms being revised to conform to the provisions of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA).  Form W-9 is furnished to a requester (e.g., a payor, withholding agent, etc.) and is not filed with the IRS.

The Form W-9 is used by payees to certify they are a US person and to provide their correct taxpayer identification number to facilitate Form 1099 reporting.  The Form W-9 can also be used by certain US entities to certify their status as an exempt recipient who is not subject to Form 1099 reporting and backup withholding as well as to identify themselves as a non-specified US person that is exempt from reporting under FATCA.  The Form W-9 should be completed by US persons, which include individuals who are either US citizens or residents of the US, and entities such as US partnerships, corporations, estates, and domestic trusts. 

Although the IRS released a new Form W-9 and instructions, the IRS did not provide a period of time for implementing the new form.  The FATCA regulations allow up to six months to implement a revised Form W-8, however, this rule does not apply to Form W-9.  In 2001, when there was a significant change to Form W-9 the IRS issued a notice permitting six months to implement the use of the new form.  Absent specific guidance when the use of the form must be implemented, withholding agents and payors must work to implement the form immediately.