How to Apply for a Social Security Number

COVID-19 Pandemic and SSN Applications

The Social Security Administration in Berkeley is now offering in-person appointments and have resumed in-person service for people without an appointment. It is strongly recommended to schedule appointments in advance to avoid long waiting time at the local office. Call the Berkeley SSA at (877) 531-4696 to make an appointment to apply for your SSN. Print-outs of scanned/digital I-20s are being accepted for SSN applications.

Social Security Number (SSN) Application Steps
for F-1, J-1, and J-2 status:

  1. Read When to Apply for an SSN before submitting your application.
  2. Complete and print out Social Security Application Form SS-5.
  3. Collect the additional required forms and documentation (see table below).
  4. Submit the application and the required documents in person at the Social Security Administration's office. In-person appointments are recommended. Request a verification receipt of your application.
  5. Wait approximately two weeks for the Social Security card to arrive in the mail.
  6. Present the Social Security card to employer for review.
  7. Store the original Social Security card in a safe place. Do not carry it with you.

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Social Security Administration

 2045 Allston Way, Berkeley, CA 94704
(near downtown Berkeley BART station)

Click here for open hours