Social Security Number (SSN) for newborn babies

Everyone in U.S. regardless of age is expected to have a Social Security Number. Newborn babies are no exception to this. This article describes the process of applying for the SSN for a newborn baby. Why is the SSN important?

Your child is dependent on you and you will add your child to your income tax return to get eligible benefits. For this, you will need the SSN.

You will also need to get your newborn a social security number for the following reasons:

  • To open a bank account for the baby
  • To buy savings bonds for the baby
  • To get medical coverage for the baby
  • To apply for government services for the baby

Applying for the Social Security Number for a newborn baby is simple. All you have to do is provide evidence of your identity and the baby's identity. There are several acceptable documents for the process.

Tips for applying for the SSN for the newborn

  • Applying for the SSN is voluntary for newborn babies.
  • File for the SSN at the time of birth of the baby. The hospital will take care of everything related to filing for the birth certificate and SSN.
  • At the hospital you will be required to fill a document requesting the newborn baby's birth certificate.
    • In the form, there will be an option for applying for a Social Security number for the baby.
    • If you write "yes", you must provide both parents' Social Security numbers if you can.
    • If you do not have these or one of the parents has the SSN and the other does not, you can still apply for a number for your child.
    • You will get the Social Security Number for your newborn baby in mail.
  • If you do it later on your own, you may skip some detail which may cause delay in getting the SSN.
  • If you choose to file for the SSN later, please complete the form SS-5 Application For A Social Security Card. This application form can be filled online and printed. It does not have to hand written. The officer will verify the information printed on your form with the documents of identification. You can use your driver's License or passport along with work authorization documents to prove your identity. Overall, you will have to submit the following documents to the Social Security Office:
    • Proof of your baby's U.S. citizenship,
    • Proof of your baby's age and identity,
    • Proof of your own identity (Driver's License),
    • Copy of the birth record for verification.
  • Find out the nearest Social Security office by visiting http://www.ssa.gov/ You must click on the tab 'Find a Social Security Office'. You will be directed to a new page where you can enter a zip code. For example, if you enter the zip code 94086 (for Sunnyvale, CA) you will get the following address:
    Social Security
    Suite 350
    700 E. El Camino Real
    Mountain View, Ca 94040
    Phone: 1-800-772-1213 and 1-800-325-0778
  • You can apply for the Social Security number and card for no fee at all. Remember that the Social Security services are free.