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Social Security Number/Individual Taxpayers Identification Number (ITIN)

Social Security Number (SSN)

A Social Security Number (SSN) is a unique, 9-digit taxpayer identification number used for taxpayer identification, income reporting, and record-keeping purposes. A Social Security Number is not work authorization. The Social Security Administration (SSA) issues numbers to all U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and eligible foreign nationals. Eligibility to apply for a Social Security Number is dependent on one's eligibility for employment in the U.S.
Everyone who is employed in the U.S. must have a Social Security Number. Once issued, the number is valid for a lifetime. If you have been issued a number previously, do not apply for another as this will cause confusion in your tax records. If you do not have a Social Security Number, you will need to visit one of the local Social Security Administration offices to apply for one.

Individual Taxpayers Identification Number (ITIN)
ITIN is a tax processing number issued by the IRS for certain resident and non-resident aliens, their spouses, and their dependents. The ITIN is a 9-digit number in the same format as the SSN (9XX-8X-XXXX) and begins with a "9," with the 4th and 5th digits ranging from "70" to "88." It is only available to individuals who need a tax payer identification number for valid tax purposes and who do not have, and are not eligible to obtain, an SSN from the Social Security Administration. For more information on applying for an ITIN number, contact the International Programs Office.

How to Apply for a Social Security Number and ITIN
F-1 and J-1 students are eligible to apply for a Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayers Identification Number (ITIN) only if they are in the United States and currently holding a job. You do not need to have a SSN in order to rent an apartment, apply for cell phone, or apply for a driver's license as an international student.

Documents needed to apply for a SSN and ITIN

If you are a new student, there is a 10-day wait time to apply for an SSN/ITIN.

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