ITIN numbers to expire if not used on a tax return for 5 years

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Starting July 1, 2014 Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs) will expire if not used on a federal income tax return for five consecutive years.

To give all interested parties time to adjust and allow the IRS to reprogram its systems, the IRS will not begin deactivating ITINs until 2016.

The new, more uniform policy applies to any ITIN, regardless of when it was issued. Only about a quarter of the ITINs issued since the program began in 1996 are being used on tax returns. The new policy will ensure that anyone who legitimately uses an ITIN for tax purposes can continue to do so, while at the same time resulting in the likely eventual expiration of millions of unused ITINs. See the IRS news release for more details.