COVID-19, Social Security Number and Card

Replacement or Corrected Social Security Cards during the COVID-19 Pandemic

March 23, 2021 • By

Last Updated: April 5, 2021

A hand holding a Social Security CardSocial Security offices are currently open only for in-person appointments for limited, critical situations, depending upon local office conditions. However, you can continue to apply for a replacement Social Security card online and by mail.

Before requesting a replacement card, please remember that you might not need the physical card. Most of the time, simply knowing your Social Security number is enough.

If you have a critical situation that requires you to have a physical card and you cannot apply by mail or online, you should call your local Social Security office. Please visit our Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates page for more information.

Applying Online

If you don’t need any changes to your Social Security Number record (such as a name or date of birth change), applying for a replacement card online is your most convenient option. You don’t need to mail proof or visit an office.

You can use our online application if you are an adult, have a State-issued drivers’ license or non-driver identification card, and live in the District of Columbia or one of the 45 States that verifies State-issued documents for us. All you need to do is create a my Social Security account to access and complete the online application.

If you live in one of the five States that do not participate—Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, Oklahoma, and West Virginia—know that we are working hard to bring this service to you as soon as possible.

Applying by Mail

We require proof of your identity with your replacement card application, usually a State-issued drivers’ license or non-driver identification card, or U.S. passport. We call these documents “primary” identity proofs. We understand mailing primary identity proofs with your replacement card application can be challenging. To help, we are temporarily expanding our policy to accept alternative identity documents—or what we call “secondary proofs”—when you cannot mail primary proof.

Acceptable secondary proofs include, but are not limited to:

  • Employee identification card.
  • School identification card.
  • Health insurance card (not a Medicare card).
  • U.S. military identification card.

These proofs must be current (not expired), show your name and identifying information (such as your date of birth or age), and be an original or a certified copy.

If you need to change your name, when you mail your replacement card application, you will need to submit proof of identity plus proof of the name change. The proof of identity can be primary or secondary proof. Proof of the name change could be a marriage certificate, divorce decree, Certificate of Naturalization showing the new name, or a court order approving the name change.

You may be able to submit one document to serve as proof of your name change and identity. For example, you may submit a marriage certificate as proof of name change and identity if the certificate shows the marriage occurred within the prior two years and:

  • Includes your prior name.
  • Includes your age, birth date or parents’ names.
  • This information matches your Social Security Number record.

We will return any documents you send us.


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About the Author

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner

Comments

  1. Anoop K.

    Hi,
    I wanted to update my Social security records with my becoming a US citizen. Can I do that but submitting an online application?
    Thanks,
    Anoop

    • Vonda

      Thank you for your question, Anoop, and for reading our blog. Congratulations on becoming a U.S. citizen. You cannot update citizenship status with Social Security online. You will need to update your Social Security record by showing us your Certificate of Naturalization and completing an application for a corrected Social Security card. All submitted documents must be either originals or certified copies by the issuing agency. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies of documents. Please visit our Social Security and Coronavirus web page. If you believe you qualify for an in-office appointment, call your local office. You’ll find the contact information using our online Social Security Office Locator.

      • Jamie

        Hello,

        Recently got married and need to change my last name.

        Could you please confirm if I could just send in my marriage certificate?

        Thank you.

        • Vonda

          Hi Jamie, thank you for your question. Check out our Social Security and Coronavirus web page for details on the documents you need to mail in with your Social Security card application to get a replacement card with your new name. We temporarily expanded our policy to accept secondary identity documents. We hope this helps!

      • Joyce

        When are the offices will re-open for public? Everything is open in California already. I’m not comfortable mailing my original documents because I know someone that lost all her documents thru mail.

        • Vonda

          Hi Joyce, thanks for using our blog. You can call your local Social Security office for guidance on the appropriate service channels available in your area for submitting evidence. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  2. Mary J.

    How do I get a copy of a new social security card for my ten-year-old granddaughter whose mother passed away in October?

  3. Albert S.

    Why did SSA turn down my request for an replacement SS card when I provided and submitted all the appropriate and necessary information requested on the request form.
    Thank you for considering my question and prior request. SSA *** ** ****
    Sincerely
    ALBERT S Bryant

    • Vonda

      Hi Albert, thanks for using our blog. Please call your local Social Security office. Look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  4. SSgt M.

    I hope you know it is illegal to copy a military ID. You also find this on the internet and the DOD web site. It is a violation and punishable under the UCMJ.

    • Vonda

      Hi SSgt Montgomery, thanks for using our blog. For Social Security purposes, all submitted documents must be either originals or certified copies by the issuing agency. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies of documents.

  5. Connie L.

    I am the guardian of my great niece and i have a photo copy of her social security card, but not the original. Her mother can’t find it and my niece wants to get her learners permit for driving. She is 15 years old and has her birth certificate and school ID. What do I do to get a replacement?
    Thank you,
    Connie Laufenberg

  6. Anthony J.

    I mailed all the proper documents that you guys asked for. I still have not gotten my documents or my replacement card. I need to identify myself with that card so I can start a job. Please help

    • Vonda

      Hi Anthony, thanks for using our blog. Please call your local Social Security office. Look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  7. Faith S.

    You say all you need is a state issued id to apply blind but that’s not altogether true. To continue past that step you need a credit/debit card. Some young adults do not have one and to require that information is not reasonable. In my opinion.

    • Vonda

      Hi Faith, thanks for using our blog. To create a my Social Security account, or to add an extra level of security, you may need to confirm your identity by using financial information. However, when applying for a replacement Social Security card by mail, usually a State-issued drivers’ license or non-driver identification card, or U.S. passport is acceptable identification. We hope this helps!

  8. Cherylle B.

    If I have documents that are pertinent to my disability that you guys need to have in order to continue my disability payments is there a Dropbox at the office or do I have to mail them in

    • Vonda

      Hi Cherylle, thanks for using our blog. Please call your local Social Security office. Look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  9. Jorge V.

    Is a Mexican passport an acceptable form of I’d for a new ssc?

    • Vonda

      Hi Jorge, thanks for your question. We process Social Security Numbers and issue cards for certain lawful immigrants. We call these processes Enumeration at Entry (EAE) and Enumeration beyond Entry (EBE).

      If these automated processes are not available to you, we may schedule an in-office appointment for a new card request in certain situations. Appointment availability is based on available staff and office operating status. Please call your local office to see if an in-office appointment is necessary and possible. To contact your local office, please look for the local office telephone number at Social Security Office Locator under “Social Security Office Information” for the office you select. The toll-free “Office” number is your local office.

  10. Can d.

    Applied got new card gavevaol documents cost me $40.00 that is charged for new card and my documents were not good enough. Want me in person.
    Now how do I get my money back. I found my card.
    They seem to have treated me differently than interpreting here. My new card should have been sent.

    • Vonda

      Hi Can dee, thanks for using our blog. The Social Security Administration does not charge for a replacement social security card. Some private companies not affiliated with Social Security or any other government agency charge fees for this service. However, these companies offer no advantage and you still must provide documents directly to Social Security.

      Be cautious about giving your private information, especially your Social Security number, to anyone.

      Be sure and stay away from unfamiliar sites and ensure that you’re at ssa.gov. We take protecting the public’s personal information very seriously. All of our online applications use an identity verification process to protect the privacy of your identity and your Social Security information.

Comments are closed.