How to Apply for a Social Security Number

WHEN to apply:
Wait at least 10 business days from date of initial check-in with ISSO.

WHAT to bring:
J-1 Scholars:  Passport, DS-2019, I-94 and UCSF appointment/invitation letter (on UCSF letterhead)
Students:  Form I-20 with work authorization (CPT/OPT) or DS-2019 and on-campus work authorization letter from ISSO (for J-1 students)

WHAT to do at the Social Security Office:
Complete an Application For A Social Security Card (Form SS-5); this is available at the Social Security Office or you may download it at before visiting the office.
After applying, request a “Verification Receipt” before leaving the Social Security office.

WHERE to submit your application:
There are 3 local offices in San Francisco
1. 1098 Valencia St, San Francisco 94110. Between 21st and 22nd St
2. 90 7th St, Annex 1st Floor, San Francisco 94103. Between Market and Mission St
3. 560 Kearny St, San Francisco 94108. Between Sacrament and California St

We advise using public transportation. Please visit for public transportation directions or an online map resource such as If you plan on using MUNI, please remember to ask the driver for a transfer ticket!

To check for the closest location nearest you go to

After you receive your Social Security Number, provide this information to your department payroll representative.
Applying for a Social Security card is FREE!!