Social Security Information

The purpose of a Social Security Number (SSN) is to help the government keep track of an individual's earnings in the U.S. for tax purposes. Federal law states that you must have valid employment offer to obtain a SSN. You do not need a Social Security Number to

  • Open a bank account
  • Rent an apartment
  • Open an utility account (gas, electric, etc)
  • Set up a cell phone
  • Conduct business correspondences

If you are eligible for employment, you must apply for an SSN in person at the local Social Security office and provide both originals and photocopies of documents pertaining to your immigration status. The purpose of providing these documents is to establish your age, identity, immigration status, employment eligibility. You must also bring with your offer of employment letter. The chart below lists the required documents to apply for an SSN:

Required Documents
(originals and photocopies)
H-1B Temporary worker
Valid Passport * * *
Form I-94 (white card stapled into your passport) * * *
SEVIS Form I-20 *    
SEVIS Form DS-2019   *  
Form I-797 Approval Notice     *
Employment authorization letter from International Student and Scholar Adviser
(Depts: Please contact ISS for sample)
Granted by Designated School Official (DSO)
 Granted by Alternate Responsible Officer (ARO)
Not required
Letter of offer from on-campus employer Only one of these documents are required for F-1 students * *
EAD (Employment Authorization Document)    
CPT  (Curricular Practical Training)

For directions to the Patchogue Office, please click here [PDF][DOC]

Additional information can also be found at Social Security Administration (SSA) website or you may download the SSN Application[PDF].