A qualified intermediary (QI) is any foreign intermediary (or foreign branch of a U.S. intermediary) that has entered into a qualified intermediary withholding agreement with the IRS.
A QI’s EIN will always begin with 98.
QIs certify to their status on Form W-8IMY. Generally, QIs are responsible for NRA withholding and reporting responsibility for their own account holders or customers, however, they may also assume Form 1099 reporting and backup withholding responsibility. Because QIs agree to take on these additional compliance obligations in a QI Agreement with the IRS, they have simplified withholding and reporting rules. A withholding agent making a payment to QI that does not assume NRA withholding responsibility must treat the payments as made directly to the account holders and customers of the QI. A QI is not required to provide a withholding agent with documentation it obtains from its non-US account holders and customers. The QI will provide a withholding statement with information related to its withholding rate pool information.