October 22, 2014

What original documents do I need?

 

Citizenship

We can accept only certain documents as proof of U.S. citizenship. These include a U.S. birth certificate or a U.S. passport.

Age

You must present your birth certificate. (If one exists, you must submit it.) If a birth certificate does not exist, we may be able to accept your:

  • Religious record made before the age of 5 showing your date of birth;
  • U.S. hospital record of your birth; or
  • U.S. passport.

Anyone age 12 or older requesting an original Social Security number must appear in person for an interview. We will ask for evidence to show you do not have a Social Security number. Here are examples of documents you can use to prove a Social Security number was never assigned:

  • If you lived outside the United States for an extended period, a current or previous passport, school and/or employment records, and any other record that would show long-term residence outside the United States could be used to show you do not have a Social Security number.
  • If you have lived in the United States and you are applying for an original Social Security number, we may ask you for information about the schools you attended or we may ask you to provide copies of tax records that would show you were never assigned a Social Security number.

Identity

We can accept only certain documents as proof of identity. An acceptable document must be current (not expired) and show your name, identifying information (date of birth or age) and preferably a recent photograph. For example, as proof of identity Social Security must see your:

  • U.S. driver's license;
  • State-issued non-driver identification card; or
  • U.S. passport.

If you do not have one of these specific documents or you cannot get a replacement for one of them within 10 days, we will ask to see other documents, including:

  • Employee ID card;
  • School ID card;
  • Health insurance card (not a Medicare card); or
  • U.S. military ID card.

Note

We may use one document for two purposes. For example, we may use your U.S. passport as proof of both citizenship and identity. However, you must provide at least two separate documents.