USCIS Announces Partnership with SSA to Issue Social Security Cards Using Form I-485


Exciting news for green card applicants! On August 9, 2021, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a new partnership with the Social Security Administration that will allow most applicants filing for adjustment of status to register lawful permanent residence, to apply for a new Social Security number or replacement Social Security card using the newly updated Form I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.

As many of you know, a foreign national must show evidence of their identity and employment eligibility before they can lawfully work in the United States. An acceptable document showing such employment eligibility is an unrestricted Social Security card issued by the Social Security Administration.

Previously, applicants granted lawful permanent resident status were required to attend their local Social Security office and submit documentation in person in order to obtain their Social Security card.

Now, USCIS has worked with the SSA to streamline the application process and applicants granted permanent residence status will no longer have to submit additional paperwork with the SSA.

Instead, applicants may now utilize the revised Form I-485 to request a new or replacement Social Security card. The new I-485 form asks additional questions that would normally be asked when applying for a Social Security card at a Social Security office. This saves applicant’s the time and hassle of having to make a separate and lengthy trip during the COVID-19 pandemic.

How will this new process work?

Once the I-485 application for permanent residence has been approved by USCIS, the agency will electronically transmit the data from the application to the Social Security Administration. Then, the Social Security Administration will process the data and automatically assign an original Social Security number or issue a replacement card to the applicant as requested.

Will there be an increase in the I-485 filing fee because of this change?

No. This new partnership with the Social Security administration will not increase the filing fee for Form I-485. It is absolutely free.

How long will it take for me to receive my Social Security card after green card approval?

Applicants who receive their Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) from USCIS after being approved, should expect for their Social Security card to arrive in the mail from the Social Security Administration within 2 weeks.

Importance of Changing Address

By law, applicants for immigration benefits and lawful permanent residents are required to inform USCIS when they change their residential address. The address change notification must be sent to USCIS within 10 days of moving. This is crucial especially when important documentation like Social Security cards and Green Cards are being mailed to you.

To find out more about this new update click here.

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