A Social Security number (SSN) is a unique, nine-digit identification number issued by the United States Social Security Administration (SSA). International students, scholars, and in some instances, dependents, may apply for an SSN if they are legally employed in the U.S.
F-2, H-4 and TD visa holders are not eligible to apply for a Social Security number.
Citizens of Canada do not need a U.S. visa to apply for a Social Security number.
Documents to Bring to the SSA Office
- Form DS-2019, if in J-1 status or Form I-20, if in F-1 status
- Form I-797, if in H-1B, TN, or O-1 status
- EAD card, if in J-2, F-1/OPT, or pending Permanent Residency
- I-94 card (the small white card attached to your passport) or I-94 electronic printout
- Letter of job offer addressed to you from employer/department
- IC validation, if you are in F-1 or J-1 status AND requirement that as an F-1/J-1 student, you must be enrolled full-time prior to requesting the letter
- CPT I-20, if as an F-1 student, you are on CPT; you can not apply more than 30 days prior to the start date of your CPT
- Note: If you are an J-1 student sponsored by IIE/Fulbright or another organization, you must contact the sponsoring organization or institution for instructions on how to apply for an SSN.
- Social Security Application Form