Most of us are assigned a Social Safety quantity at delivery and preserve it for the remainder of our lives. It is in all probability one of many few lengthy numbers you possibly can recite off the highest of your head.
However can you modify your Social Safety quantity?
Typically, the Social Safety Administration discourages individuals from altering their numbers, as a result of it creates confusion with tabulating and distributing advantages.
You possibly can’t change your Social Safety quantity merely since you need to, or as a result of your card has been misplaced or stolen. However the company makes exceptions in a small variety of circumstances — like should you’re a sufferer of home abuse or id theft — and might show that utilizing your current quantity is inflicting you hurt.
Altering your Social Safety quantity does not routinely imply an abuser will not be capable of discover you or a prison will now not be capable of steal your id. So it is price pondering significantly earlier than making use of for a brand new one.
This is what you must find out about getting a brand new Social Safety quantity, together with the explanations it is allowed, the method concerned and different obtainable choices.
When can you modify your Social Safety quantity?
The Social Safety Administration will assign a brand new quantity if:
- Multiple individual is assigned or utilizing the identical quantity.
- Sequential numbers assigned to members of the identical household are inflicting issues.
- You’re a sufferer of ongoing id theft by somebody utilizing the unique quantity.
- You’re being harassed or abused or your life is in peril.
- There’s a spiritual or cultural objection to digits within the authentic quantity. (On this case, written documentation in assist of the objection from the spiritual group you’ve gotten a longtime relationship with should accompany your utility.)
How do I apply for a brand new Social Safety quantity?
You possibly can’t do it on-line — you need to submit a brand new Form SS-5 in individual on the nearest Social Safety workplace. (Examine this site for an inventory of Social Safety Administration subject places of work.)
Candidates are requested to offer a press release explaining the explanations for needing a brand new quantity in addition to “present, credible, third-party proof documenting the explanations for needing a brand new quantity,” in response to the Social Safety Administration.
If you happen to’re a US citizen, you may additionally need to deliver two original documents establishing your age, id and citizenship standing — like a passport, delivery certificates or driver’s license — in addition to proof of a authorized identify change, if acceptable. (Photocopies or notarized copies aren’t accepted.)
Noncitizens should present present immigration paperwork, which may embrace an I-94, Arrival/Departure File or Employment Authorization Doc (EAD).
Examine with the Social Safety Administration about enough documentation earlier than heading in. You possibly can visit the agency website or name 800-772-1213.
Victims of home abuse should submit documentation
If you happen to’ve been topic to abuse or harassment, you need to full a press release explaining why you want a brand new quantity and supply supporting documentation of the abuse — equivalent to police studies, restraining orders, medical information and letters from shelters, counselors or others with direct data of the state of affairs. (Social Safety may also help you collect proof.)
“Generally, one of the simplest ways to evade an abuser and scale back the chance of additional violence could also be to relocate and set up a brand new id,” in response to the Social Safety pamphlet New Numbers for Domestic Violence Victims.
“Though we do not routinely assign new numbers, we’ll accomplish that when proof exhibits you’re being harassed or abused, or your life is endangered.”
If you happen to’re altering your identify as a part of your new id, Social Safety recommends doing that first, so you possibly can current court docket approval of the identify change. The company can even have to see custody documentation for any youngsters you are additionally requesting new numbers for.
In instances of id theft, you may have to show ongoing fraud
Along with proving ongoing fraud, you may additionally have to show you are struggling continued hurt, like repeated hits to your credit standing, and that you’ve got tried each different technique to resolve the issue.
Even should you get a brand new Social Safety quantity, your previous one is not ‘erased’
The brand new quantity is cross-referenced with the unique to make sure all earnings underneath each numbers are credited to the identical account. So getting a brand new quantity might not resolve no matter state of affairs you are in.
“Making use of for a brand new quantity is an enormous determination. Your capacity to work together with federal and state companies, employers, and others could also be affected,” in response to the Social Safety web site. “If you happen to change your identify, monetary, medical, employment, and different information will probably be underneath your former SSN and identify.”
Are there different choices as an alternative of getting a brand new Social Safety quantity?
As a substitute, you possibly can put a “block” in your current quantity. That stops anybody — together with you — from accessing your data on-line or by cellphone.
If you need a block lifted, you may need to contact Social Safety and ensure your id.
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