• Life in Canada

  • Social Insurance Number

  • Social Insurance Number

    The Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a nine-digit number that Canadian citizens, new immigrants and temporary residents need in order to work in Canada.A SIN is issued to one person only and it cannot legally be used by anyone else.

    How to Apply

    Applying at Service Canada

    Service Canada has made it easy for you to apply for a SIN, to request a confirmation of your SIN, or to amend your SIN record. When applying in-person, you do not have to complete an application form nor do you have to mail your original proof-of-identity documents. You only need to gather all the required documents and take them to the nearest Service Canada point. If everything is in order, you will get a SIN during your visit.

    Applying by Mail

    All applicants who reside in Canada must apply in person; however, special provisions are made for individuals who cannot apply in person at a Service Canada point.
    You may apply by mail if:

    • You live 100 kilometers (62.14 miles) or more from the nearest point of service.
    • If you have other limitations and cannot have another individual submit an application in person on your behalf, you must contact Service Canada on their free number 1-800-206-7218 (select option # 3) to find out if you are eligible to apply by mail.


    Required Documents

    Permanent residents must submit one of the following documents:

    • a Permanent Resident Card issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC);
    • a Confirmation of Permanent Residence issued by CIC, accompanied by either a travel document (for example, a foreign passport) or an alternate photo identification issued by a provincial/territorial authority (for example, a driver’s license).  Note: The Confirmation of Permanent Residence is acceptable if used within one year of the date you became a permanent resident. The Permanent Resident card is required after this period;
    • a Record of Landing issued by CIC before June 28, 2002;
    • a Verification of Landing issued by CIC. This document is only acceptable to amend a SIN record or to obtain confirmation of an existing SIN; or
    • a Status Verification or Verification of Status issued by CIC. This document is only acceptable to amend a SIN record or to obtain confirmation of an existing SIN.

    Temporary residents must submit one of the following documents:

    • work permit issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC);
    • study permit issued by CIC. International students must present either:
    • a study permit that indicates the permit holder “may accept employment” or “may work” in Canada; or
    • a study permit and a “confirmation to work off campus” letter issued by CIC prior to February 6, 2015. If neither of these requirements is met, you may contact CIC to verify if you are eligible to apply for an amended study permit.
    • a visitor record issued by CIC indicating you are authorized to work in Canada or that was issued under Regulation 186 or 187 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Regulations or Regulation 19 of the repealed Immigration Act or issued to a member of the clergy; or
    • a diplomatic identity card and a note of permission of employment issued by Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada.


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