International Scholars

Social Security Number

A Social Security Number (SSN) is a unique, 9-digit number used for taxpayer identification, income reporting and record-keeping purposes. The Social Security Administration (SSA) issues the SSN. In Columbus, the SSA is located at 200 N. High Street.

You may apply for a Social Security Number if you are employed in the United States. Once issued, the number is valid for one's lifetime. If you are not employed, you may apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN).

Applying for a Social Security Number

If you are an F-1 or J-1 international student, please see here for information regarding the SSN process for students.

In order to apply for a Social Security Number, J-1 scholars will need to:

The Social Security Administration requires the following items in order to apply for a
Social Security Number:

  1. Passport
  2. I-94 card (Print a copy at
  3. Form I-20 or DS-2019
  4. Complete Employment Verification Letter
  5. Complete Form SS5, which is available at the Social Security Administration or can be downloaded at

Once you have the completed form with signatures from both your employer and OIA, please call a local Social Security Administration Office to schedule a short in-person appointment.

Social Security Administration Office Locations:

200 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215 | 866-964-1723
1051 Worthington Woods Blvd, Worthington, OH 43085 | 866-789-0957
1060 Georgesville Rd, Columbus, OH 43228 | 866-656-0178
220 S Hamilton Rd, Columbus, OH 43213 | 866-592-0733

Once you receive your Social Security Number by mail you must:

Identity theft and your Social Security Number

Be careful with your Social Security card and number. Show your card to your employer when you start a job so your records are correct. Provide your Social Security number to your financial institution(s) for tax reporting purposes. Keep your card and any other document that shows your Social Security Number on it in a safe place. DO NOT routinely carry your card or other documents that display your number. Learn more.