How Do I Apply For A Replacement Social Security Card?
A social security card serves as your primary identifier if you are a citizen of the United States. If you don’t have a social security card, you may have difficulty applying for credit or federal financial aid, or getting lawful employment.
Healthcare providers may also ask you for your social security card before providing treatment. If you lost your social security card or if someone stole it, it is, therefore, of the utmost importance to start the application process for a replacement card as soon as possible.
Keep reading to learn how you can file for your new Social Security card with the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Protect Your Identity
Before you start the process of replacing your Social Security card, you have to make sure that you are not vulnerable to identity theft.
If someone is in possession of your lost or stolen card, they can take out loans, access, your financial assets, and apply for credit cards in your name. To prevent this from happening, do the following immediately:
- File a police report
- Place a fraud alert with the credit bureaus
- Freeze your credit card
- Keep an eye on your bank account activities
When you are sure that your identity is protected, you can start the process of replacing your Social Security card.
Before you can start the application process for a replacement Social Security card, you need the proper original documentation to prove your identity and U.S. citizenship.
To prove your identity, SSA needs:
- Your U.S. passport,
- State-issued non-driver identity card, or
- U.S driver’s license.
To prove that you are a United States citizen, one of the following documents will be sufficient:
- Your U.S birth certificate or
- U.S passport.
The SSA will not accept photocopies of these documents, even if they are notarized. You can, however, furnish them with a copy that the issuing agency certified.
Since you may not want to furnish the SSA with your original identity documents, getting a certified copy from the relevant agency is likely to be your best option.
Now that you have your documents ready, it is time to start the complicated application process.
Regardless of whether you apply online or via the mail, you will have a lot of paperwork to fill out. Attention to detail is critical when filling out the different portions of the form, as the SSA will have no problem denying your application due to inaccuracy – even if you only made one spelling mistake.
After you completed your application for a replacement card, you have to submit your form and supporting documents directly to the SSA. Since the SSA process each application individually, you have no way of knowing how long you have to wait before getting your new card.
The process of replacing a lost or stolen social security card is a long and tedious one. Upon completion, go through your application many times to make sure that there are no mistakes and that you only go through the process once.