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Social Security

Your social security number is assigned to you by the Social Security Administration when you start working. Your social security number can also serve as a form of identification when establishing credit,  getting a driver's license, renting or buying a house, and so on. You can only get a social security number if you have a job.

Applying for a Social Security Number

In order to apply for a SSN, you will need to visit the Social Security Administration with the documents that pertain to your situation, listed below:

F-1 or J-1 students with on-campus employment
  • A completed Social Security Application 
  • An employment offer letter from USC STAMPED and SIGNED by an international student advisor. (This letter is obtained from your hiring department, but must be stamped by ISS.)
  • If you are a J-1 Student: A letter from your sponsor
  • Passport
  • Visa
  • I-94
  • I-20 or DS-2019
F-1 students with CPT work authorization
F-1 students with OPT work authorization
  • A completed Social Security Application
  • Passport
  • Visa
  • I-94
  • I-20 with OPT information (obtained by meeting with international student advisor)
  • Employment Authorization Document (EAD Card)
J-1 students with Academic Training
J-2 dependents