Social Security Card
The Social Security card is one of the most valuable identifications that you can possess. It contains sensitive information about the person whose name appears on the card. This is why it is important to act right away in the event that it got lost or stolen.
The Social Security insurance program is supported by payroll taxes. It is distributed to various welfare programs and paid based on the period of time a person pays the contribution to Social Security. Over time, this simple card has become the primary identification number in various government institutions.
Several other private institutions use it as a personal identifier. This includes various educational sectors, hospitals, as well as employers and businesses. The Social Security card contains confidential information about its holder’s financial condition and credit information.
Criminal elements could use your Social Security information to steal your identity. To protect yourself, you have to do several things in the event that your Social Security card is lost or stolen. You can replace it with a new Social Security card.
It is important to note, however, that you only have up to three card replacements in a year or 10 in your entire lifetime. Here are some of the tips that should do right away if you found out that your Social Security card is lost or stolen.
1. Call the IRS and Report Missing or Lost Social Security Number
Report the stolen or missing Social Security card or number to the International Revenue Service. This way the institution is aware that you no longer possess the card. It can also avoid going after you in the event that fraudulent tax returns are filed. If you do not report it to the IRS, it might hold you accountable for fraudulent practices in filing tax returns.
2. Bring Up The Situation to Credit File Companies
You may contact any of the three major companies to update your credit file should your Social Security card goes missing or stolen. Call Transunion, Equifax, and Experian and take note that you only have to contact one of the three companies. The one you reported your case will update the two other agencies about your situation. The alert will float for 90 days but you can renew it.
3. Get A Replacement Or New Social Security Card
After reporting the incident to the concerned authorities, you can get a new or a replacement Social Security card. In order to do this, you have to do these three easy steps.
- Prepare Necessary Documents
You are going to need all the original and current or updated documents. You will need these to prove your identity, citizenship, and age.
In order to prove your citizenship to the Social Security Administration, you have to show your original US birth certificate and US passport. If you are born outside the US, you can choose Using Certificate of Naturalization Foreign Born US Citizen Required Document for Foreign Born US Citizen’s Social Security Card.
In order to show proof of your age, you have to provide original copies of your US hospital birth record, US passport, or any religious record made before you were 5 years old showing your date of birth.
You can show your US-issued driver’s license as proof of your identity. Other identification cards that you can use to support your identity includes state-issued ID, health insurance ID card, US military issued ID card, US passport, school ID card, and employee ID card.
4. Apply for Social Security Card Replacement Online
For a more convenient application, you can apply online. Additionally, you can create an account on the Social Security Administration website and fill out the electronic application form. When doing an online application, avoid using public computers and make sure that your connection is secured. Also, it is important to note that only if you have the required documents can you apply for a new card online. These are the requirements:
- You must be a US citizen
- You are of legal age specifically 18 years old and above
- You have a US posting address
- You have a state-issued ID or a US Driver’s License
5. Visit An SSA Office Near You
To avoid getting your information hacked when you file an application online, you can apply for a new card in person. If you have already made an application online, the SSA will bring you to a page that points the nearest SSA office.