Should a Trust Get an EIN?

In most cases, a Revocable Living Trust does not need a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) for tax or any other purposes — at least while the Grantor is still alive.

A Revocable Living Trust is a disregarded entity for tax purposes. Any income generated by or within the Trust is taxed as income for the Grantor and is included on the Grantor’s tax return.

In most cases, if the Trust needs an ID number for tax purposes, the Grantor’s Social Security number will suffice.

The probate avoidance benefit of a Living Trust is not affected by the presence or absence of an EIN. Assets held by the Trustee of the Trust will not require a probate process upon the death of the grantor, whether the Trust has an EIN or not.

To create a Revocable Living Trust on your own without the need for an attorney, see Standard Legal’s Trust self-help documents.