1. General information
A Social Security Number (SSN) is the 9-digit number needed to work in Canada or access government programs and benefits.
The Social Security number is issued to only one person and cannot be legally used by another person. It is your commitment to protect your Social Security number. Keep any documents that contain your Social Security number and personal information in a safe place.
Service Canada currently issues paper social security numbers (Social Security Number Confirmation Letter). Plastic SIN cards have been discontinued, but SIN cards in circulation that have not expired can still be used.
If you are a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, you must have a Social Security Number in order to work in Canada or to receive benefits and services from state programs. Children over the age of 12 can register their own Social Security Number.
Parents and legally authorized persons acting on behalf of the applicant (for example, a legal guardian or legal representative) may apply for a Social Security Number for minors in their county and are raised to care for them.
How to apply?
There is no fee to apply for a Social Security Number (SSN).
Where to find your SSN
If you can’t remember your Social Security number, there may be ways to find it yourself. You can find your Social Security number on the following websites:
- On your tax return
- In your tax receipt (T4)
- On your employment record
- RRSP contribution
- You can ask your employer for their social security number
Apply for a SSN
You can apply online or by mail to:
- Apply for a Social Security Number
- Get confirmation of your Social Security number
- Modify your subscription
If you are unable to apply online or by mail, you have the option of applying in person.
If you applied for a Social Security number online and your application meets the requirements, you will receive a letter with your Social Security number in the mail within 10 business days after we receive your application. If more than 15 business days have passed and you want to know the status of your application, contact the SIN program.
If you applied for a Social Security number by mail and your application meets the requirements, you will receive a letter with your Social Security number in the mail within 20 business days after we receive your application. If it has been more than 25 business days and you want to know the status of your application, please contact the SIN program. Applying for a Social Security Number (SSN) is free.
Please review the What You Need Before You Apply page to make sure you have all the necessary documents ready before you apply.
To protect your personal information, please do not leave your computer or device unattended while completing the SIN application. Always close your browser if you are away from your computer or device.
Apply by mail
Please review the What You Need Before You Apply page to make sure you have all the necessary documents ready before you apply. Mail your completed application and original documents (copies will not be accepted) to:
Social Security Registry Office
PO Box 7000
Bathurst NB E2A 4Q1
If you send your application by certified mail, the documents are sent to you in the same way. Service Canada is not responsible for documents lost in the mail.
Once you have applied, the law does not prevent you from working in a covered job before you receive your Social Security number.
Apply in person
Do not visit a Canada Service Center if you:
- You have symptoms associated with COVID-19, such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath
- Have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days
- Be ordered by public health authorities to self-isolate or self-isolate
Follow general health advice. Anyone who does not follow public health advice and attempts to enter the office may be reported to the local public health authority. Request assistance with the following programs using Service Canada’s service request form:
- Employment Insurance (EI)
- Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Benefits, Old Age Security (OAS), Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS)
- Social Security Number (SSN)
- Request a passport service immediately
- Veterans Service of Canada