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If you’ve ever misplaced or had your wallet stolen, you know what a pain it can be to replace all of the items. One of the most important documents that many people carry in their wallet, a Social Security card, will take some time to replace if misplaced. You should never carry your Social Security card with you (unless you know you will need it that day). However, if your wallet does become compromised with your card inside, here are the steps you should take in replacing a lost or stolen Social Security card.

Time Is Of The Essence

The faster you act when learning that your Social Security card has been stolen, the less time a thief will have to cause you harm. You should immediately call your local police department and file a police report. In addition, you need to call the Social Security Administration (SSA) to request a replacement SS card. The SSA can be reached at 1-800-772-1213.

Another important step is to visit and ensure that you have claimed your ‘My SSA’ profile. This account will allow you to request a replacement card along with many other benefits such as changing your address. 

Applying For A Replacement Social Security Card

If you meet certain requirements, you may be able to obtain a replacement SS card online through the SSA website. You can view the requirements here. If you don’t meet the requirements, you will need to provide certain documentation along with completing an application. Here are the steps you need to take in order to be prepared for applying for a replacement card:

  • You will need to verify your age, identity and citizenship. The full details on the documents you will need can be found at the Social Security Administration website.
  • Print and fill out an application for a Social Security card.
  • Take your completed application along with the necessary documents to the SSA. All documents must be originals. You can find your nearest SSA office using their office locator tool. Beware that not all Social Security Administration offices are Card Centers, so not all offices will be able to replace your card. Call to ensure that the office you plan to visit is a Card Center.

If you lose your card, don’t panic. The SSA provides three card replacements per year, free of charge. You are entitled to ten free card replacements over your lifetime. 

Replacing your card doesn’t clear you of possible identity theft though, so you may want to consider putting a credit freeze or alert on your credit reports. You should also consider signing up with an Identity Theft Restoration service, such as ReclaimMyID. If your identity is stolen, ReclaimMyID will restore your identity to 100% of what it was pre-theft. You will save time and money as well as having the peace of mind that someone has your back. 

Replacing a lost or stolen Social Security card can be a bit of a process, but hopefully you now know what to expect. Once you receive your new card, store it at home in a secure place instead of carrying it with you!

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