ITIN and SSN requirements for IHSS applicants and recipients

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) has issued instructions about In Home Supportive Services (IHSS) recipients as employers of their providers.  The IHSS recipient is an employer of record of the provider.  CDSS performs payroll and other functions for the IHSS recipient. For CDSS to complete these functions, all IHSS recipient and applicants must have a Social Security Number (SSN).  If the applicant or recipient does not have a SSN, they must have or apply for a Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

CDSS must register IHSS as an employer of record with the Employment Development Department (EDD). To establish the IHSS recipient as an employer of record, EDD requires the recipient to have either a SSN, or, if ineligible for a SSN, apply for an ITIN through the Internal Revenue Service.

Counties cannot deny an IHSS application if the applicant does not have either a SSN or ITIN. The county will redirect applicants who do not have a SSN or ITIN to apply for an ITIN through the Internal Revenue Service. During the process for receiving an ITIN, which can take 60 to 90 days, the county must still process the IHSS application. Counties can help applicants or recipients apply for an ITIN. (ACIN I-70-23, November 21, 2023)