Social Security

We can help you apply for a social security number if you so desire. You will need one if you’re planning to work in the US. This is different from your CSU ID number.

The Social Security Number (SSN) is intended only for use in relation to employment in the U.S. It is a taxpayer identification number. The Social Security Number does not represent permission to work nor is it proof of U.S. citizenship or permanent residence.

Protect Your Identity

Keep your Social Security card and number in a safe and secure place.

Do not give your SSN to just anyone. Employers, tax agencies (IRS, tax accountants), CSU, and banks are some of the few organizations that might legitimately request your SSN. The IRS will not call you and request your SSN over the phone. If this happens, it is likely a scam.

If anyone requests your SSN that you are unsure of, please contact our office and we will help you confirm the organizations legitimacy, if possible. When in doubt, don’t hand it out.

Social Security Administration Updates

As of March 2005 the Social Security Administration will no longer accept applications from most non-resident alien visa holders unless they have actually been offered a job and have a letter of offer from their employer. Students who do not have a job will not be eligible to receive a social security number. International Students And Social Security Numbers information page.

In the past, a social security number has been used in a variety of ways:

  • Credit card applications
  • Opening bank accounts
  • Purchasing cell phone or cable services and contracts
  • Leasing an apartment or other housing
  • Applying for a driver’s license or state ID card
  • Credit reports
  • As a secondary form of ID for a wide variety of uses

Non-resident aliens will no longer be able to receive a SSN for these purposes. Some landlords and other services may require a letter of non-eligibility from the Social Security Department in order to provide access to their services i.e., Colorado Driver’s License Department.

If you are paid in the U.S., you must have a SSN to file a U.S. income tax return.

Who Needs a Social Security Number?

You MUST have a SSN if you have a graduate assistantship or are otherwise employed on or off campus.

Once you obtain a SSN, it is your permanent number and may be used on subsequent visits to the U.S.

Please Note: the temporary assigned University number (99X-xx-xxxx is NOT a Social Security number.

United States employees pay 7.65% “F.I.C.A.” tax, which includes the Social Security and Medicare taxes. The employer automatically withholds it from the employee paycheck. If you are paid, you will have this tax withheld unless you are tax exempt due to your immigration status. J-1 and F-1 students should not have the Social Security or Medicare taxes withheld if they have been in the United States for less than five calendar years.

Update Your Records With CSU

As soon as you receive your Social Security Number, request University Records to change your temporary number to the permanent number. As soon as you receive your number, take it to room 211 in Centennial Hall. They will change your temporary number to a permanent SSN number.

Also, inform your bank of your new Social Security number.

For additional information on Social Security numbers and non-eligibility please contact the Office of International Student and Scholar Services. (491-5917)