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


  1. Tracie M.

    I’m trying to check on the status of my new social security card after submitting all required documents for changing my last name after marriage. When I finally got through to someone on the phone using the 1800 # they could not help me out at all. This makes me very nervous as they have all my original documents and now I can’t get help with where they are at or where my application is in this process? It’s been about a month now.

    • Jillian

      Same boat here. Unreal.

  2. Laura L.

    Hello, I requested a name change (due to marriage) by mail. I attached a copy of our marriage license. It has been several months and I have not received any correspondence. Can you help?

  3. Desire K.

    Hello! My name is Desire Kuester and I submitted my medical document through mail to Harrisburg’s office and I called multiple times receiving confirmation I would be receiving my medical document back. It’s been 3 months. I received my ssc and a separate letter with just the letter explaining “This is to send you your original documents back.” But it was only empty with the letter… May I please have questions answered or know who was working on my government official profile and didn’t correctly send me my document back? I’ve heard horrible stories of people stealing identities through medical documents and I will be finding every way to take action that I can if someone professionally doesn’t help me understand where my medical documents that should’ve been rightfully returned to me, are suddenly missing for 3 months, and reassurance I would receive it. I have not. Please help me someone.

    • Patty

      Hi Desire. We apologize for the difficult time you are experiencing working with Social Security. We have referred your complaint to our Office of Operations to follow up and to take corrective action as necessary. We hope this matter is resolved soon.

  4. Michelle M.

    I sent my application to receive a replacement on my social because I need it for work I sent it July 29 2021 and today is the 15th day I hope I receive at least today

  5. Paula r.

    Can i aend a copy of my dl to het my social security catd

  6. Everett T.

    Hi- I mailed in my documents (including a passport, birth certificate, ss card, and the name change order) to the Minneapolis office on June 1st, 2021. I haven’t recieved anything back yet and while I have tried calling the office multiple times, I have been on hold for more than two hours every time and failed to get to anyone. Since sending in my documents I have moved states and have several job applications that have been held up because this – is there any other way to check in on the process?

    • Patty

      Hi Everett, we are sorry to hear about your experience. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that you continue to work with your local office with specific questions. To contact your local Social Security office, 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.

  7. Leroy A.

    My social security name is misspelled

    “Leroy A. Ramierz”

    Remember calling years ago and they told me it was a typo…..want to get this corrected…

  8. Nikki

    I changed the last name on my VA driver’s license after marrying 2003. At the time, DMV only required a copy of my marraige license, and said that I was not required to change my name with Social Security. I don’t know if the law has since changed, or if I was misinformed. Now my driver’s license is expired. Although I have been licensed under my married name for 18 years, DMV is unable to renew my license because the name does not match the name on my Social Security Card. It appears that Social Security requires a photo I.D. to change the name on my Social Security Card. I do not have a passport, work or student I.D.; and my Driver’s license is no longer valid. What can I do to change my name so that I can obtain a new Driver’s License? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  9. Holly S.

    Sent documentation for a name change due to marriage and only received the documents back. No card. Is this normal?

    • Tasha

      Yes they will not send all your documents back and the card for security purposes

    • Gigi

      How long did you have to wait? You are one of the few comments that at least got their documents back. I am still waiting, it’s been weeks…I see on here for some it’s months. That makes me very nervous. 🙁

  10. Kim

    I sent off all of the documentation to get a replacement social security card for my minor son today, since I can’t seem to get anyone on the phone to make an appointment. How long before we get a receipt that the new card is on the way? That’s all he needs to start his new job.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Kim. Once the application with documents are received and processed, it typically takes about 10-15 business days to receive the replacement Social Security card. You can contact your local Social Security office to follow up if needed. We hope this helps.

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