A social security card is a must for anyone who lives in the United States. It proves that you’re a citizen of the US and is a necessity for a wide array of situations including getting a job, applying for any sort of credit and a myriad of other situations. What happens, however, if you don’t have a social security card? Or if you’ve lost one? The good news is that it’s much easier now than ever before to actually get a social security card online.
Getting Set Up Online
The Social Security Administration (SSA) knows that technology is one of the easiest ways for today’s population to access things and they have made it easier than ever before to use the internet to get your social security card. The first thing that you need to know is that you’ll have to have a valid email address. If you haven’t used your email address in awhile, make sure that you check it to ensure that it’s still valid and that you can access it.
Once you’ve double-checked to make sure that your email address works it’s time to get online to the SSA’s website. Go to: https://www.ssa.gov/myaccount/. You’ll need to click on the “sign in or create an account” button that you’ll see right on the front page.
If you already have an account, great! All you have to do is sign up. If, however, you don’t have an account you’ll need to create one. Select “create an account” and you’ll be promoted to fill in some information. You’ll then be asked to create a username and password. Make sure that the username is something that you’ll easily remember, but try not to use something that would be easily hacked into. For example, don’t use your email address as your username but do use something that you’ll easily remember.
Getting a solid password is even more important. The last thing you want is someone to be able to access your social security information without your consent. There are a number of websites that can help you to create passwords that are complex enough that most people won’t be able to guess them. There are even companies who offer to create, and keep, passwords for you for a small cost. The choice is yours, but make sure that you don’t select a password that you use for any other account as this can make it much easier for someone to break into all of your password-protected accounts.
One thing to be aware of is that the SSA takes privacy and security very seriously. Once you begin the signing up process you’ll likely be asked to verify some information. For example, the online site might state that it is aware that you signed up for a mortgage account on a specific date, and will then ask you to select which company you have your mortgage through as well as how much your mortgage is per month (it will give you a range, you don’t need the exact number). You may be asked to select a current or previous telephone number or asked what company your car loan is through. All of this information is to help the SSA know that you are the person applying for the replacement card.
You’ll also need to set up what’s known as a second identifier. This is another way for the SSA to contact you if they need to help you log into your account and it helps to prove that you are who you say you are. You’ll be asked to receive a text or an email. The information you’ll receive will be a one-time code that you’ll be asked to use in order to fully complete your verification. This two-step process is designed to help prevent identity theft and is very successful at doing so.
After You Establish An Account
So you’ve established an account, what’s next? Your Social Security account is excellent at helping to collect benefits and can also be used to allow you to request a benefit verification letter, which you’ll need if you’re applying for government assistance, such as Supplemental Assistance Program (SNAP) or housing vouchers. You’ll also be able to be able to use your My Social Security account to request a replacement Social Security card or Medicare card.
On the My Social Security account you’ll need to select the “request replacement Social Security Card” option. You’ll be asked to provide a bunch of different information, including your full name, date of birth and if you were born with a different name. For women who have been married, or anyone who has taken a different last name when they married, make sure that you select “yes” for this option. Often people think that the only type of person who has to select yes to this question are people who have completely changed their identity. A maiden name, however, is the name you were born with and is the type of information you’ll need to provide on the online application.
You’ll be asked for other information and prompted to answer it. This information includes stating whether or not you have a valid US state license, verifying your birth date and answering if you need to change any of the previous information (including date of birth and citizenship) that is currently on your file.
You’ll need to have access to your license number or to your ID card number. If you don’t have access to this information you’ll likely be required to visit your local Social Security Office to get a replacement. Once you’ve answered everything, the online program will tell you if your application was a success or not. If your application was a success you have nothing else to do! You just sit back and wait and you’ll receive a replacement Social Security card in a few weeks.
While you now know how to get a Social Security card online, it’s important to note that the SSA themselves states that you may not need one at all times. The majority of the time you will be fine as long as you know your Social Security number. If, however, you don’t know the number, if you want to have your card in order to apply for a loan or need it “just in case” in the future, you now know how to apply for one line!