Let me deal quickly (and perhaps brutally) with the second half of the question first. Professionals and other serious researchers will better serve themselves and their clients by accepting the fact that much information worth obtaining comes with a price tag. This has always been the case albeit skewed by the hype surrounding the Internet. This is not to say that you can never find valuable information for free, but it may behoove those who are not research professionals to consult with a librarian first. In this case, if
EIN Finder does not list the employer identification number (EIN), you have only a few free sources left to check.
Briefly, the Internal Revenue Service assigns EINs to entities that file business tax returns. These encompass some sole proprietorships as well as other business structures. Company trusts may be assigned different employer identification numbers (see Trust EIN
Free sources of this information for private companies include EIN Finder, GuideStar's
form 990 database for non-profit organizations, company invoices, and company Web sites. To discover whether or not a company provides its EIN on its Web site, try searching variations of the phrase, employer identification number, limited to the company's domain.
For public companies, you can also check a current securities filing. Look on the cover (or close to the first) page for "I.R.S. Employer Identification No." Use an
EDGAR database to search these filings.
Other (fee-based) resources include
Dun & Bradstreet,