US Citizens usually obtain a Social Security Number at an early age. However, if you’re just moving to the USA, you might find out that a Social Security Number is associated with something called your “CREDIT SCORE”. So, if you’re Foreign Born, and don’t have a Social Security Number, you will have NO Credit Score! That makes it tricky when you apply to rent an apartment or buy insurance! Usually the rates for insurance are based on your credit score in the USA. And, landlords often do a “credit check” on applicants to apartment/homes. If you are NEW to the USA, and are eligible, you may apply for a Social Security Number soon after your arrival. It used to be a good idea to wait two weeks after your arrival in the USA to apply – however, they tell us that you may now apply right away if you’re eligible. Let’s say you need a NEW Social Security Number because you have never had one. Or, you are not a US Citizen, but have authorization to work in the USA. You will need to visit the Social Security Administration office in person. At least two ORIGINAL and VALID documents are required to prove AGE, CITIZENSHIP and IDENTITY. Or, if you’re moving to the USA from another country, you will need to prove IMMIGRATION STATUS, WORK ELIGIBILITY, AGE and IDENTITY.
If you are a US Born Citizen, you probably already have a Social Security Number. All employers will require you to produce this card before you can be hired and paid. If you need to get a replacement card, and you are OVER 18, have a VALID District of Columbia Driver’s License, you can do this online!
ALL DOCUMENTS must be ORIGINAL and VALID (no expired driver’s licenses or passports–and no photo copies.) Example documents include: Birth Certificate, Passport (Not expired), Driver’s License, State ID Card. Other documents that work may include Employee ID, School ID, Health Insurance Card, and US Military ID.
If you are Foreign Born you will need to prove your Immigration Status, Work Eligibility, Age and Identity. At least TWO documents are required, and must have ORIGINAL seal and be VALID. Examples of what to bring are (and bring at least TWO or more if you have them!): VALID Passport, PLUS I-551, Permanent Resident Card (not expired), or I-766 (Employment Authorization Card). I-94 (showing arrivals and departures into USA*) [*ONCE YOU APPLY, you should not plan to leave the USA until you receive your Social Security Card! If you leave, the dates of your arrival/departure will not match original application dates and you may get ‘lost’ in their system requiring you to re-appear and re-apply!]
Are you the spouse of the person eligible to work? You need to bring your ORIGINAL Marriage License to prove you are related to them! And, also your Passport/ID.