Your social security card contains your social security number, which is a nine-digit number that is used as a unique identifier for you. The number helps the government to record your wages, self-employed earnings, and any benefits that you claim.

You will need to provide your social security number when you start a job, collect benefits, or try to use certain government services. You don’t have to show the card, just provide the number – but it is still important that you keep the card in a safe place. If someone else were to find the card and learn your social security number, they may be able to use the information they have to conduct identity theft.

Can You Request a New Cart Online?

If you have lost your social security card, then you can apply for a new one online as long as you have a valid driver’s license or state-issued ID card from a state that meets the latest ID standards (some older cards and driver’s licenses are not suitable for use to apply online). You will need to be a U.S. citizen with a U.S. mailing address (APO, DPO and FPO addresses are considered suitable for this purpose). If you are unable to provide the correct ID, or you need to make a change to your name, then you will have to fill out the paper application form.

What Documentation Do You Need to Replace Your Card?

You will need to provide proof of citizenship and proof of age. For proof of citizenship, a birth certificate or a passport is acceptable. For proof of age, you should provide a birth certificate if you have one. If no birth certificate exists, then religious records made before you were five years old, that state your date of birth, are acceptable, as are records of your birth from a hospital. You will need to show some form of photo ID such as a driver’s license or ID card. If you do not have something like this, then an employee, school, or military ID card or a health insurance card may be accepted.

Do You Have to Pay for a New Social Security Card?

There is no fee to apply for a new social security card if you apply via the Social Security Administration website. There are some third party websites that allow people to apply and that charge a fee on the premise that they are running a ‘check and send’ service. The application form is simple, and the SSA will offer advice and support to those who need it, at no extra charge. Always apply direct via the website. Do not use a third party website. At best, those websites are a waste of money and may delay your application. At worst, the websites could be a front for people who are attempting to commit identity theft.

There is a limit of ten social security cards per person, which may sound like a lot until you realize that this is a lifetime limit. Always keep your social security card in a safe place. Get details at