Registering with the IRS as a Household Employer

Once you have verified that your household employee can legally work for you, your next step is to register with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a Household Employer. You do this by completing Form SS-4 and sending it to the IRS. The IRS will then assign you an Employer Identification Number, or EIN.

An EIN is the number used to identify you as an employer, and will be placed on all your tax filings as an employer much like your Social Security number is used to identify you as an employee, and placed on your annual individual income tax return.

Registering with the State as an Employer

At the same time you apply for an EIN, you should also contact your state revenue department and register with it as an employer. The telephone numbers and addresses for all fifty state withholding departments are conveniently listed in the State Withholding Tax Agencies section.

Most state revenue departments share information with the IRS, and will usually contact you if you don’t call them, so go ahead and get it over with!

Since 1998, the federal Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act of 1996 (federal welfare reform law) requires all employers to report information on newly-hired employees to the agency designated by their state.

You should obtain information on how and where to report information on your household employee at the time you first register with your state as a household employer. In many instances you can report “new hires” online at your state’s new hire website.