Q: I can’t find my Social Security card. How can I get a new one?
A: First, consider whether you really need a new card.
You need to apply for a replacement Social Security card only if you don’t know your Social Security number or, if you need to show your card to a new employer. Even then, you may only need a Social Security number printout to verify your number. If you decide that you do need a card, you can replace it for free in three easy steps.
• Gather documents proving your identity and citizenship or immigration status.
• Complete an Application For a Social Security Card (Form SS-5).
• Take your completed application and original documents to your local Social Security office.
You’ll receive your replacement card in about 10 to 15 days. The types of documents you need to provide depend on your specific situation. Find out what you need online reading about the agency’s “decision tree” at www.socialsecurity.gov/ssnumber.
If you don’t need a new card and the printout will do, you still need documents to prove your identity and U.S. citizenship or immigration status. However, you can get your printout during your office visit. Learn more about the Social Security number printout online at www.socialsecurity. gov/pubs. Type “printout” in the publication search box on the left side of the screen.
Q: I’m applying online for disability benefits. What is the difference between the disability application and the disability report? Do I have to complete both?
A: You will need to complete both when you apply for disability benefits. To receive benefits, you must file a disability application. A disability report provides information about your current physical or mental condition. You should complete a disability application, a disability report, and an authorization to release medical records to file a claim for benefits. With the completion of all portions, processing becomes that much more efficient. To learn more, and to apply online, go to www.socialsecurity.gov/applyfordisability.
Send questions to Robert Fenn, Social Security Administration, Second Floor, Federal Building, 2 S. Main St., Akron, OH 44308. Fax: 330-375-5616 or email: Robert.Fenn@ssa.gov.