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Student & Scholar Services » Changes to Social Security Act

Beginning October 13, 2004, the Social Security Administration will implement new rules for assigning Social Security Numbers to international students in F-1 status.

These new rules only affect the type of documentation that the Social Security Administration will accept as proof of work authorization for F-1 students. Under this change in policy, the Social Security Administration will not assign a Social Security Number to an F-1 student unless the student provides a SEVIS form I-20, written confirmation from the Office of International Education as to the nature of employment the F-1 student is or will be engaged in and the identification of the employer for whom the F-1 student is or will be working. The student must also provide documentation in addition to the letter from the Office of International Education that shows he/she is engaged in or has secured employment. Acceptable documentation include evidence of a formal job offer, a promise of a job, or evidence that the student is engaged in that job.

The Social Security Administration also mentions the fact that there is no provision in the Act that requires employers to mandate that employees have Social Security Numbers before they can be hired. Neither is there any provision in the Act that prohibits an employee from beginning to work if he/she has not yet obtained a Social Security Number. UTA students can continue to request comptroller ID numbers from the Payroll Office in order to receive payment until a Social Security Number has been assigned.