Whose Social Security Number goes on an irrevocable trust?

A fellow caregiver asked...

When you set up an irrevocable trust and you need a checking account, whose Social Security Number goes on the checking account if it will be in the name of the irrevocable trust?

Expert Answer

Liza Hanks is the founder and owner of FamilyWorks Estate Planning, a law firm with offices in Campbell and Los Altos, California, and the author of The Busy Family's Guide to Estate Planning (Nolo, 2007).

An irrevocable trust requires its own tax ID number, called an Employer Identification Number or EIN. It's like a Social Security Number, but instead of being for a person, it is for the trust.

You get one online from the IRS website or over the phone by calling 800-829-4933.

Once you get that EIN, the trustee can open up a bank checking account in the name of the trust.