Social Security Number and The Individual Taxpayer ID Number
Social Security Administration
Students (and scholars) in F-1 and J-1 status are eligible to receive an official Social Security number if they have been offered employment (on or off campus) in the United States. Any student who works on or off campus MUST obtain an official Social Security Number, since your college-assigned ID number is not acceptable for employment purposes. Please visit the Office of International Students & Scholar Services (NAC 1/107) to obtain a letter and instructions on how to obtain a Social Security Number. Social Security numbers are issued by the Social Security Administration (www.ssa.gov).
The Individual Taxpayer ID Number
An ITIN, or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, is a tax processing number that IRS (Internal Revenue Service) has made available to certain individuals who are unable to get a Social Security Number. For all U.S. tax returns filed after December 31, 1996, including your ITIN on the return will ensure prompt processing and receipt of any refund. To obtain an ITIN, you must complete IRS Form W-7, Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, available in the International Students & Scholar Services office. IRS requires proof of nonimmigrant status and true identity for each individual applying on Form W-7. After completing Form W-7, you can mail it along with supporting documents to the Philadelphia Service Center, present it at IRS walk-in offices, or process your application through Acceptance Agents authorized by the IRS. For more information on the ITIN please check out Publication 1915, Understanding Your IRS Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.