Taxes and Social Security Numbers
Applying for a Social Security Card
Student who are in status and authorized to work are eligible for a Social Security number. If you are not eligible for a social security number, you can request a “letter of ineligibility” from the Social Security Office. You need to present your original I-20/DS-2019, passport, and I-94 card. The letter of ineligibility may be required in order to obtain a driver's license.
To apply for a Social Security number, bring the following original documents to the Social Security office :
- Form I‐20 or DS‐2019
- I‐94 Arrival/Departure Record (card or electronic printout www.cbp.gov/i94)
- Unexpired Passport
You will also need one or more of the following depending on the type of employment:
- F‐1 On‐campus Employment: On campus employment form, printed on letterhead by the hiring department and signed by the hiring department and your international student advisor.
- F‐1 Curricular Practical Training: I‐20 with CPT authorization on Page 3
- F‐1 Optional Practical Training: Employment Authorization Document (EAD)
- J‐1 On‐campus Employment or Academic Training: Letter authorizing employment from your J‐1 program sponsor on the sponsor’s letterhead with an original signature
All applicants will also need to fill out the application form (Form SS-5); we recommend filling this out and printing it before you go in to the Social Security office.
Once you have applied, it typically takes the Social Security Administration 7‐10 business days to verify your information. They will then mail the Social Security card to you. Students will be given a receipt of application that may be used to begin work while the application is pending. Upon receipt, the original SSN card must be presented to the employer.
Washington D.C. Social Security Office Location
2100 M Street NW, Washington, DC 20037
Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday: 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Wednesday 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM