The Social Security card is a very important document in United States as seen on application-filing-service.com/socialsecuritycard/form-ss-5/.
It contains Social Security number which is needed to have possibility to use social benefits from government. Also this number is important when you want to get a job. So you should to have your Social Security Number.
In most situations it is enough to use only the number, it can be a photo or printout or you can just remember it. Original of Social Security is not common needed so it can be safety hidden at your home. On the website of Social Security Administration you can also find advices that better is to don’t carry an original card and only use the number for example from a printed copy. Legally the original card is not necessary when you sign a contract with your Employer, then you need only your Social Security Number.
However, the original card is not indestructible and also sometimes it can be damaged.
Then how long does it take to get a new Social Security card?
What is needed?
The replacement of Social Security Card is possible when an old one is damaged up to three times per year. When your card is changed more than ten times in your life the procedure is more complicated and individual. So let’s focus on regular case when a card is damaged not so often. In some situations it is possible to apply online for the replacement of Social Security card. To do it you need to be over 18 years old and to have
U.S. mailing address. This request could not contain any changes of data on the card, for example change of name. To verify this online application you need to have state ID or driver license from one of states when this online procedure is possible (Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, District of Columbia, California, Florida, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Idaho, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, Montana, Michigan, New York, Nebraska, North Dakota, New Mexico, South Dakota, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Texas, Wyoming, Washington). In Wisconsin and Delaware an online confirmation is only available with driver’s license. So when you qualify to send online request for a replacement of your Social Security Card whole procedure of sending a request is fast and easy.
When you don’t qualify to apply online you need a little bit longer time to collect required documents (originals or certified copies). Different documents are needed for people born in US. and for immigrants. When you are US. Born Adult you need only to confirm your identity by driver’s license or passport or other personal identifier (for ex. school identification card, health insurance). When you are US. citizen, but you are not born in US. you need to proof your citizenship with US. passport or other document (for ex. with Certificate of Citizenship (N-560/N-561)). When you are noncitizen you need to attach to your card request also a form with your immigration status or an admission stamp in a foreign passport.
When you collect the documents and fill the request form you need to take it to an SSA Office. The procedure of replacing an old Social Security Card with a new one takes about two weeks.