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If you are a non-citizen permitted to work in the U.S., you will need a Social Security number (SSN) for tax purposes. You may also need an SSN to register for some government assistance or benefits programs. The application process is different for immigrants and non-immigrants. So, we’ll show you the right way to get a Social Security Card as a non-citizen.
How to Apply for a Social Security Card as an Immigrant
If you have not applied for a visa yet, the SSN application process is simple. You can submit a request for an SSN and card along with your visa application. However, if you are already in the U.S., you will need to visit your local Social Security Administration (SSA) office in person. If you don’t know where the closest SSA office is, use our handy office locator to find it.
Getting a Social Security Card as a Non-Immigrant
Non-Immigrants who haven’t submitted a work authorization application yet can also easily apply for a SSN. On your work authorization application, there will be an option to request an SSN. But if you are already approved to work in the U.S., you will have to visit an SSA office and apply for an SSN in person.
What to Bring to the SSA Office
If you have to apply for an SSN in person, you will need to prove your age, identity, and that you are legally allowed to work in the United States. If you are an exchange visitor or international student, you also need to bring your Certificate of Eligibility. Some applicants will need additional documents. Such as a sponsor or Designated School Official letter. All applicants must bring a completed Application for a Social Security Card. Any required documents must be originals and unexpired.
What Documents will the SSA Accept?
You can use your foreign birth certificate to prove your age when applying for a non-citizen Social Security card. But, if you don’t have it, you may also be able to use your valid passport or DHS issued document that shows your date of birth.
You must show your unexpired foreign passport to prove your identity. However, there are a few different documents you can use to show your authorization to work. The SSA will accept your:
- Lawful Permanent Resident Card
- Machine-Readable Immigrant Visa
- Admission stamp showing a work-authorized class of admission
- Arrival/Departure Record
- Employment Authorization Document
How to Simplify the Application Process
Feeling overwhelmed already? We know the Social Security card application process can be hard to navigate. That’s why we formed a team of Social Security experts and developed a simple, 3-step application process. We’re here to walk you through every step of the process. So you can get your Social Security card as quickly and easily as possible. We’ve simplified and streamlined the application. And we make sure that your information is accurate before it’s submitted. We also do all the work to determine which documents you will need to show. So you can get your application approved the first time. Click here to start your application, so you can get your SSN and get to work.