Apply For A Social Security Number


All interns must apply for and receive a Social Security Number. Student must wait at least 48 hours after registering for SEVIS. The Social Security Administration recommends to wait 10 days after arriving in the United States to apply for a Social Security number. Applying for a Social Security number and card is free. Social Security card will arrive in the mail at the address stated on application form. A successful application may take between four and six weeks.


The student must visit the nearest Social Security office and apply in person for the Social Security Number. Students will need to bring the following:

  • DS-2019
  • Passport & J-1 Visa
  • I-94 card
  • Dear Social Security Officer Letter

Students can complete the application form in advance to save time. Visit and download form SS-5 Application for a Social Security Card.

If you are uncertain of your intern’s eligibility to work in U.S.A., you can ask them to provide you with a receipt from the Social Security Officer or the Sponsor Legal Opinion Letter (document stating they are eligible to earn a paycheck even if they do not have their Social Security Number yet).

(based on the description of binding procedures of a Sponsor, i.e. CIEE).