Is it illegal to purchase and finance a vehicle using an EIN that was issued to me by the IRS?

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Is it illegal to purchase and finance a vehicle using an EIN that was issued to me by the IRS?

In November I purchased and financed a truck at a buy-here pay-here lot using my EIN. I ended up unable to pay for the truck and got behind. I turned the truck in Thursday and on Friday an investigator called and told me that he was going to obtain warrants for my arrest on Monday. He kept trying to get me to come in and talk to him. What can I expect in this? Did I break the law?

Asked on February 13, 2011 under Criminal Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

EIN numbers are issued for legal entities separate from individual persons--e.g. LLCs and corporations. If you had an EIN number for a legal entity and that legal entity bought the car in good faith, then there should be no criminal liability. Where there could be criminal liability:

1) Using the EIN for a legal entity when you were buying the car in your own name as an individual.

2) Lying on the application for the EIN--e.g. there is no separate legal entity, just yourself

3) Buying the car in bad faith--e.g. "through" a legal entity that had no assets and income, when you planned to not be able to pay.

There may be other cases, too--it depends on whether there was some misrepresentation in getting the number, using the number, or buying the truck.

If the authorities (e.g. someone with a tax, police, prosecutors, etc.) office is interested in you, you should get a criminal defense attorney, and don't talk to anyone until you do.


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