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Life After DACA: Obtaining a Social Security Number, Transferring Your Credit History, and Rescinding your ITIN
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Life After DACA: Obtaining a Social Security Number, Transferring Your Credit History, and Rescinding your ITIN

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Last updated 12/22/2012

On June 15, 2012, the Obama Administration announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a new administrative policy which would grant deferred status to certain undocumented Americans who met a series of requirements. For more information on DACA, including determining whether you are eligible and what steps you can take to apply, please visit the USCIS’s website: www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals.

If you’re a DREAMer that was approved for DACA and have an individual tax identification number (ITIN), there are a few key steps that you should take next, including:

1) Applying for a Social Security Number (SSN);

2) Transferring your ITIN credit history to your new SSN; and

3) Contacting the IRS to rescind your ITIN.

Most undocumented Americans are not eligible for a SSN but are eligible for an Individual Tax Identification Number. An ITIN is a tax identification number issued by the Internal Revenue Service to foreign nationals in the United States that allows them to file and pay taxes. With an ITIN, individuals can take advantage of certain financial opportunities, such as applying for credit cards and obtaining loans. Thus, many DREAMers with ITINs have extensive credit histories that they’ve built over the past few years.

DREAMers with deferred action are eligible to apply for a SSN and should transfer their existing credit history to that number. Additionally, DREAMers must also contact the IRS to rescind their existing ITIN as an individual cannot an ITIN and Social Security number at the same time.

(click on continue reading for the rest of the guide)

 1) HOW TO APPLY FOR A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER

The Social Security Administration has promulgated detailed guidelines for DACA-holders with instructions on how to obtain an SSN. You can view and download these instructions here:

The following is an abbreviated step-by-step guide on how to get your SSN.

Step 1: Gather all the required materials. You will require:

A. Your physical Employment Authorization Card (EAD); and

B. Original or certified copy of foreign birth certificate or foreign passport.

Step 2: Complete the Application for a Social Security Card (Form SS-5) located here:

 Step 3: Find your local Social Security Office by visiting:

Step 4: Take the completed SS-5 form along with all the required materials to your local Social Security Office. The clerk will verify your age and identity using the above documents and take the completed SS-5 form. Be sure to keep a copy of the completed SS-5 form for your records.

Step 5: You will receive your Social Security Card in the mail within 1 to 4 weeks.


2) HOW TO TRANSFER YOUR CREDIT HISTORY TO YOUR NEW SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER

Your credit history is not automatically transferred from your ITIN to your SSN, instead, you have to contact all three credit bureaus and ask them to transfer your credit history. To do so, you have to physically mail letters to all three bureaus with your request and identifying information. Additionally, you have to reach out to your financial institutions and ask them to update their records to reflect your new SSN.

Step 1: Contact any banks or financial institutions that you have accounts with and ask them to replace the ITIN on your account with your new SSN. Usually, you can walk-in to a local branch with your account information, identification, and physical Social Security card and ask to speak to a banker who will update your information.

Step 2: Write and send three separate letters to the three different credit bureaus, include the relevant documents that the form letters indicate you are sending. The three addresses for the bureaus are as follows:

TransUnion
P.O. Box 1000
Chester, PA 19022

Experian
P.O. Box 2002
Allen, TX 75013

Equifax
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, GA 30374

Be sure to keep copies of the letters for your records.

You can use the following template for the letter:


[DATE]

[NAME]

[ADDRESS]

[PHONE NUMBER]

[EMAIL]


[CREDIT AGENCY]

[ADDRESS]

To whom it may concern,

My name is [NAME] and I am writing to inform you of my newly assigned Social Security Number (SSN) which the Social Security Administration assigned to me on [DATE].

My existing credit history is under my Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) and I respectfully ask that my existing credit history be transferred to my new SSN and have all future credit reported under this number.

I have enclosed:

(1) a copy of my ITIN;

(2) a copy of my Social Security Card; and

(3) A utility bill with my name and current address; or

(4) a copy of my state identification card or driver’s license with my current address.

Names Used: [YOUR NAME(S)]

Date of Birth: [DOB]

ITIN: [ITIN #]

New SSN: [SS #]

Current Address: [ADDRESS]

Previous Address: [List your previous address if you have lived at your address for less than two years].

Thank you.

[SIGNATURE]

[NAME]


Step 3: You should receive confirmation from all three credit bureaus regarding your request within two to four weeks. If there are any issues, contact the credit bureau directly with questions.

A month after you send your letters you should obtain a credit report from all three bureaus to confirm that your information was updated. You can obtain a free credit report by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com, which allows you to place a request for your report online, by phone, or by mail.

Some credit bureaus may send follow-up letters if they cannot identify you or your credit history. Please follow the instructions on these letters and resend with any additional required documentation. In order to avoid any problems, it is highly suggested that you initially send: (a) a copy of your most recent state-issued identification (e.g. your EAD); and (b) a copy of a recent (no more than two months old) utility bill or bank statement. 


3) HOW TO CONTACT THE IRS TO RESCIND YOUR ITIN AND UPDATE YOUR TAX RECORDS

Individuals cannot have both an ITIN and SSN at the same time, thus DREAMers must contact the IRS and ask it to rescind your existing ITIN.

Step 1: Send a letter to the IRS’s ITIN operation with a request to rescind your ITIN number. Be sure to include copies of your ITIN and SSN. The address for the IRS’s ITIN Operation is:

Internal Revenue Service
ITIN Operation
P.O. Box 149342
Austin, TX 78714-9342

You can use the following template:


[DATE]

[NAME]

[ADDRESS]

[PHONE NUMBER]

[EMAIL]

Internal Revenue Service
ITIN Operation
P.O. Box 149342
Austin, TX 78714-9342

To whom it may concern,

I am writing to request that my Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) be rescinded and that all tax records be associated with my newly assigned Social Security Number (SSN). My information is as follows:

Names Used: [YOUR NAME(S)]

Date of Birth: [DOB]

ITIN: [ITIN #]

New SSN: [SS #]

I have enclosed copies of my SSN and my ITIN.

Thank you.

[SIGNATURE]

[NAME]


Once you take all these steps you can resume building your credit under your newly assigned Social Security Number. 

0

Comments

  • Guest
    brenda Saturday, 08 December 2012

    Are the addresses mentioned above applicable to all states?

  • Jose Magana
    Jose Magana Saturday, 08 December 2012

    Yes, both the Credit Bureau and the IRS ITIN Operation addresses are national addresses that receive correspondence from individuals in all 50 states.

  • Guest
    junior nopal Tuesday, 18 December 2012

    thats alot of steps but im pretty sure its worth it, soon will be doing it tho .
    thanks for writing this out , helps alot.

  • Guest
    Cristhian Friday, 21 December 2012

    Thank You Jose!
    Gracias Jose por este articulo en el que demuestra su solidaridad con los DREAMers!
    Dios lo bendiga!

  • Guest
    Tiffany V. Tuesday, 08 January 2013

    Thank you so much! you've done us a great favor! May the Lord bless you much!!

  • Guest
    tokoy Wednesday, 09 January 2013

    I cannot find those addresses on TransUnion, Experian or Equifax websites, I dont want to sound like a pessimist, but I don't want to send my social security number to an unknown PO box number. I tried calling and chatting with Equifax and Experian but they don't understand what I am trying to do. Does anybody else has the same concern?

Leave your comment

Guest Friday, 18 April 2014