Adoption is an amazing thing, bringing families together who may otherwise have never found each other. While the process is worthwhile, there are many steps on the path to fulfilling an adoption of a child in the United States. This sometimes includes the application for a W-7A Form for Pending Adoption as you prepare to file your taxes.
Here, we will discuss some of the important aspects of the form, including why you need to fill one out and when.
Why Do you Need to Complete a W-7A Form?
The W-7A form is used in lieu of a social security number for a U.S. child who is in the process of being adopted by your family. If you have not yet had time to obtain an SSN for your child, but need to file your taxes, including information on the newest addition to your family and the adoption, a W-7A form gives you a temporary 9-digit number called an ATIN so that you may still file and receive benefits for your dependant.
Who Needs to Complete a W-7A Form?
Anybody who has a pending adoption of a child of U.S. citizenship without an SSN should complete a W-7A form for pending adoptions. You should complete this form if:
- Your adoption is pending.
- Your child is living with you in your home.
- Your child does not yet have an SSN.
- Your child has an SSN but you are unable to access it yet due to restrictions regarding previous placement or family of the child.
You do NOT need to complete this form if:
- Your child has an existing SSN which you can access.
- Your child is not a U.S. citizen.
- Your adoption is final, and not pending.
In the case that your child is not a U.S. citizen, or is considered a resident alien, you should complete form W-7 for your child’s ITIN instead.
Why is it Important to Complete the Form Before Tax Season?
It is important to complete a W-7A before tax season so that you can claim your child as a dependant and member of your household. This entitles you to child tax benefits, which you may otherwise be unable to obtain. The W-7A provides access to the ATIN number needed for your child to be included in your tax preparation.
Steps to Get Your Adoption Taxpayer Identification Form
To apply for your child’s ATIN you will need:
- Your child’s name.
- Your child’s birth date/record of birth.
- Placement agency information including proof of placement from an adoption agency, the hospital where the child was born, or a court document ordering the placement of the child.
- Permanent resident card, Certificate of Citizenship, Passport with I-551 stamp (For children who are not U.S. citizens.)
Placement documentation from your adoption must be attached to the W-7A form when you submit it. The form can then be taken to an IRK walk-in office or mailed to the Internal Revenue Service at the Austin Service Center ATIN Unit at P.O. Box 934 in Austin, Texas 78767.
When Should I Apply for the ATIN?
The W-7A form needs to be completed 30-60 days before you require the ATIN number for tax filing. This means that you should apply for the ATIN early.
Contact Adoption & Beyond for More Information
Adoption & Beyond is a non-profit adoption agency serving families in Kansas and Missouri. Our friendly and compassionate team is here to help you at each stage of the adoption process. For more information on adoptions in Kansas or Missouri, or to learn more about W-7A forms, we invite you to contact your local tax account. If you don’t have a tax accountant, call Adoption & Beyond at 913-381-6919 and we can provide you with a few different accountants who are familiar with adoption and taxes.