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Social Security Number

ssn

Social Security Number (SSN) is a unique, 9-digit number used for taxpayer identification, income reporting, and record-keeping purposes. Once issued, the number is valid for a lifetime. You should keep it safe and provide only as needed to U.S. government agencies or credible financial institutions.

Who can apply 

F-1 and J-1 students who are working and in legal status can apply for a SSN. More specifically:

When to apply

  • The application must be made before your job at NYU ends or your off-campus work authorization expires.
  • You may not apply earlier than 30 days before your work begin date.
  • Once you’ve submitted your application you should receive your SSN within 2-4 weeks.

How to apply

If you work ON-CAMPUS

  1. Make sure that:
    1. you have attended an OGS check-in workshop
    2. you are registered full time for the current semester
    3. you have a current local U.S. address in Albert
  2. Bring a photocopy of your I-94 record and your NYU job offer letter to the Office of Global Services (OGS). This is a drop-off service that does not require you to see an OGS advisor. Your department must use this job offer letter template copied onto department letterhead and your supervisor's signature must be in blue ink.
  3. Collect your OGS approved letter (we email you within 5 business days to come pick it up from our office).
  4. Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live with the following documents to apply for a SSN. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints. 
    1. Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future)
    2. I-94 record marked “F-1 D/S”
    3. NYU I-20
    4. NYU ID card or another form of photo ID
    5. Your NYU job offer letter with OGS approval

  1. Make sure that:
    1. you attended an OGS check-in workshop
    2. you are registered full time for the current semester
    3. you have a current local U.S. address in Albert
  2. Get your work authorization letter. If you are not sponsored by NYU, contact your J-1 program sponsor (as indicated in Section 5 of your DS-2019) for directions. If you are sponsored by NYU, bring your passport, I-94 card, and most recent DS-2019 to the OGS during walk-in advising hours along with these details of your employment offer:
    1. The name and place of employment
    2. Your supervisor's name and contact information
    3. The number of hours you will work per week
    4. The dates of your proposed employment
  3. Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live with the following documents to apply for a SSN. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints.
    1. Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future
    2. I-94 record marked “J-1 D/S"
    3. NYU DS-2019
    4. Your NYU job offer letter with OGS approval

If you work OFF-CAMPUS

Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live, with your documents, to submit an application for a Social Security number. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints.  

  • Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future)
  • I-94 record marked “F-1 D/S"
  • NYU I-20 with Curricular Practical Training authorization listed on page 3
  • NYU ID Card or another form of photo ID

Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live with the folllowing documents to submit an application for a Social Security number. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints.

  • Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future)
  • I-94 record marked “F-1 D/S"
  • NYU I-20 with employment recommendation listed on page 3
  • NYU ID Card or another form of photo ID
  • Your Employment Authorization Document (EAD) issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live with the following documents to submit an application for a SSN. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints. 

  • Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future)
  • I-94 record marked “J-1 D/S"
  • NYU DS-2019 with Academic Training authorization
  • NYU ID Card or another form of photo ID
  • Academic Training letter from the OGS

If you need a number for tax forms and you don’t qualify for SSN

Students receiving a fellowship or scholarship who are not expected to work beyond their own studies cannot apply for SSN. Instead, they will be asked by the university to complete, among other papers, a W-7 form to obtain an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) necessary to file their tax forms.

  • F-2 spouses and family members are NOT eligible to accept employment in the U.S., and therefore not permitted to apply for Social Security numbers. However, F-2 spouses and family members may apply for Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITINs) via Form W-7, available through the Internal Revenue Service.
  • J-2 spouses and family members who have been granted employment authorization by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services may apply for SSN. Go to the Social Security Administration card center closest to where you live, with the following documents, to submit an application for a SSN. Be prepared for long lines and security checkpoints.
    • Unexpired passport (valid at least six months into the future)
    • I-94 record marked “J-1 D/S"
    • NYU DS-2019
    • Another form of photo ID
    • Your Employment Authorization Document (EAD) issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security

 

Social Security Card Centers

Note: If you live in New Jersey or elsewhere, please use the Social Security Office Locator to find the center where you should apply.


Lost your Social Security number?

It’s important that you protect your SSN and guard yourself against identity theft. If you lost your SSN card you will need to reapply for a new one. You can only apply for a replacement card if you are authorized to work off-campus or have an on-campus job at NYU.

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