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US PayPal account as business (without SSN)


I am going to incorporate and considering Delaware (via Stripe Atlas, for which I got accepted) but since all my revenue is in PayPal, I need to get a US PayPal account in the business name and then verify it to withdraw funds to my bank account.

Problem is, as a foreigner I don’t have a SSN number which I read is required to verify PayPal in the US. Stripe Atlas will provide a bank account and tax id, and I can use a service for forwarding address as well, but if PayPal requires SSN that’s a show killer.

Has anybody here gone through this process of getting a PayPal account verified for a foreigner-owned American corporation?


You don’t have to be a US citizen to get a US tax ID. Instead of an SSN it is called a TIN, Taxpayer Id Number.

You also don’t have to be a US citizen to register a US business, which will give you a business tax ID. Called an EIN.

If you are a foreign owner of a US business (e.g. inc’d in DE), you will have to file for a TIN in any case.

Google more and you will find out how to apply/qualify/people to help with the process etc.


Hi Amy,

Thanks for the reply. But so the question is, can I verify a US PayPal with just a TIN/EIN? That’s what I’ve been reading conflicting opinions about.


A little off topic - but why would you sign up to STRIPE Atlas but still be running all your payments via PayPal?

Guess there is nothing stopping you doing this but not exactly what Stripe wanted when they set this up I would think?


Want to use Stripe when expanding my app to other platforms. Right now it’s a Shopify only app so that’s 100% PayPal (as Shopify pays out charges we make via their payments API via PayPal only).


There is no difference between an SSN and TIN for verification purposes.
(Doesn’t entitle you to social security benefits tho, I am not an
accountant but fairly sure that’s the only difference.)


Super helpful Amy, thanks a lot.


To hijack the thread…why did you join Stripe Atlas? What country are you in?


Purely for guaranteed access to bank account.

From Belgium and living in Vietnam since a few years.

Still have to submit Atlas application though, just got approved for the beta. If I know I can get a Hong Kong bank account (a nightmare nowadays), then Hong Kong Ltd sounds better still.

Edit: Just noticed Stripe Atlas Beta comes with 15K USD in free AWS credits. That’s a sweet benefit.


Hi, could you get the fully verified PayPal business account through Stripe Atlas ? Did all go fine ?


I did not pull the trigger yet, as I heard that although (as Amy said) ITIN and SSN are equivalent, I read that PayPal does not accept ITIN anyway. (I think ITIN starts with a different number and PayPal detects that.)

I really hope I am wrong, next weekend more research on this. These kind of things are by far the worst part of running a business, but I learned to embrace to suck.


I was able to setup a PayPal account with a U.S. Tax ID number.

I already had a PP account using my social security number, and I wanted a separate account for my business.
Once I had my tax ID, it was a simple process to sign up for a new account.

LLC’s and Corporations are easy to start in the US and Tax ID’s are easy to get. Shouldn’t be too difficult for you.


Also Stripe Atlas offers C-Corporation instead of more commonly used LLC, does C-Corporation entity meets requirement of registering U.S. PayPal business account or in order to register an U.S. PayPal business account do we need to have a LLC entity ?

The other question is also even if we are owner of a company in U.S., does U.S. PayPal allow us to use our account outside of the U.S. where our residence is or do we have to use VPS to connect PayPal ?


Hey PJC, I’m in the same situation (trying to open a US business paypal account for my LLc company). So, finally what happened? Did paypal accept your TIN? Thanks in advance!


Didn’t incorporate yet.


So pjc, how did it go, I am really looking for an answer as I am almost in the same situation you are in, and I am looking for a legal solution.


Like I said, didn’t incorporate yet. Operating as sole proprietor right now.


So far I haven’t be able to verify my account using ITIN. The verification form says that my ssn is incorrect. I had my account open for years without a problem. When I requested the credit service they offer the nightmare started.
Im currently exchanging emails with the slow support, and so far they are telling me that I need to close my account and open it on my residence country, while Im telling them that my US company needs an US paypal account …


^^ Exactly the horror stories I have been hearing about.


Havent you tried creating a brand new account, using your business name instead or updating an existing account?