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In my years living in the United States, I've used my SSN several times, but I've never been required to use my Social Security Card. Is there any process or activity that requires the card that your Social Security Number is printed on?

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    They can be used to prove your right to work in the US.
    – phoog
    Jan 14, 2016 at 1:42

2 Answers 2

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They can be used for ID. For government purposes various type of cards have points and a certain number of points is needed for various purposes. A social security card can be used as such.

For example, when we go to get a drivers license, you can bring an ATM Card, Passport, Utility Bill, SS Card (as examples) for ID. Each of those has a different value (passport high, utility bill low). They add the values you present and they have to be above a threshold.

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  • Can you give any examples? Do you mean as photo ID or just ID?
    – Smurfton
    Jan 13, 2016 at 6:02
  • Just an ID. For example, when we go to get a drivers license, you can bring an ATM Card, Passport, Utility Bill, SS Card (as examples) for ID. Each of those has a different value (passport high, utility bill low). They add the values you present and they have to be above a threshold. Jan 13, 2016 at 15:39
  • Can you give any table of the values? Or does it vary by state and it is thus the state assigning the SSC this function/significance? Jul 6, 2022 at 23:12
  • It varies by state. For example, Vermont requires ID from up to 4 different categories, while New Jersey uses a point system as well as categories. Jan 27, 2023 at 21:31
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The law does not ever require you to show your Social Security card, or even possess a physical card. However, your employer is required, by the IRS, "to get each employee's name and Social Security number (SSN) and to enter them on Form W-2". If you present a physical card, that is sufficient. Otherwise, the employer must verify the number. There does seems to be widespread confusion in HR offices over whether an employee must present a physical card.

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