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  How do I replace a lost Social Security card?
  I lost my Social Security card. What should I do?

You can replace your card for free if it is lost or stolen. 

To replace a lost Social Security card:

  • Complete an Application For A Social Security Card (Form SS-5); and
  • Show us documents proving your identity.
  • Show us documents proving your U.S. citizenship if our records do not already contain that information.
  • Show us documents proving your current, lawful, work-authorized status if you are not a U.S. citizen.

In most cases, you can mail or take your application and original documents to your local Social Security office. If you live in the New York City metropolitan area, Las Vegas NV, Orlando FL, or Phoenix AZ you may need to apply in person at your local Social Security Card Center.

All documents must be either originals or copies certified by the issuing agency. We cannot accept photocopies or notarized copies of documents.

For more information about getting a replacement card and the documents you will need to show us, see Documents You Need for a Social Security Card

You are limited to three replacement cards in a year and 10 during your lifetime. Legal name changes and other exceptions do not count toward these limits. For example, changes in noncitizen status that require card updates may not count toward these limits. Also, you may not be affected by these limits if you can prove you need the card to prevent a significant hardship.

In most cases, the only time you will need to produce your card is when you apply for employment. Therefore, if you anticipate starting new employment, you should request a replacement card in advance.

Keep your Social Security card in a safe place with your other important papers. Do not carry it with you.

Even though you apply for a replacement card, Social Security takes no action on the loss of the original card. Reporting a lost or stolen card to us will not prevent its misuse.

A person using your card or number can get other personal information about you and apply for credit in your name. So, if you suspect someone is using your number, you should take these steps to protect yourself and your financial health:

  • Educate yourself about identity theft;
  • File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission;
  • Check your Social Security record (call toll-free 1-800-772-1213; TTY 1-800-325-0778) to ensure your income is calculated correctly; and
  • Monitor your credit reports.

For more information, see:

  File Attachments
   • HTML document Application for a Social Security Card
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