Any church that has employees, files employment tax returns, or has a bank or brokerage account, must have an "employer identification number" (EIN). This includes nearly every church in the United States. An EIN is obtained by filing a Form SS-4 with the IRS using the IRS website (irs.gov) or by submitting a paper form. Since 2010, line 7 of Form SS-4 has asked for the name and Social Security number of a "responsible party" of the applicant.
The IRS became increasingly frustrated by its inability to communicate with responsible parties identified in employers' SS-4 forms, usually because the responsible parties designated by employers no longer served in those capacities due to any number of reasons, including resignation or death. On November 18, 2013, the IRS adopted an entirely new requirement to address this problem, stating any employer with an EIN must report changes in the identity of its responsible party to the IRS by March 1, 2014, using Form 8822-B.