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Why Do I Need To Update My Social Security Card After Citizenship? Here Are The Reasons

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So, “why do I need to update my social security card after citizenship?” Is it even necessary?

Firstly, congratulations on your new status. You’re now a citizen of the United States of America and have the same right as other citizens.

Now, let’s discuss some of the critical things you must do to reflect your new status, and if updating your social security card is one of them. 

Keep reading for more information on this topic.  

Why Do I Need To Update My Social Security Card After Citizenship?

You need to update your social security to reflect your current status. In other words, your Social Security card must show that you’re now a citizen and entitled to the same benefits as others. 

Failure to update your social security card after becoming a citizen can affect you in many ways. It can affect your chances of landing employment, benefits, and other government services. 

Once employed, an employer will run a background check on you. All they need to do is enter your Social Security Number into the United States Department of Homeland Security web-based system, E-Verify, to check if you’re eligible to work in the United States of America. 

You could lose opportunities you qualify for if you don’t update your Social Security after your naturalization ceremony. 

Note also that your Social Security Card won’t update itself. You have to do it yourself. So, start as quickly as possible. Update your SSA records to reflect your new status, and congratulations once more as you’re now a citizen of this great country.  

How To Update Your Social Security Records After Citizenship

Keeping your Social Security record accurate is vital for so many reasons. It will make securing employment, government services, and other future benefits seamless for you. 

A Handy Tip: You can only update your Social Security card in person. Prepare the necessary documents before heading to the Social Security Administration office. 

The Social Security Administration advises that you wait at least 10 days after your naturalization ceremony before approaching the agency to update your Social Security record. The reason is to ensure the data reflecting your naturalization has been updated.

How can you update your Social Security card? Here are the four steps you’ll go through to update your records. 

  • Get your ID (means of identification) and other supporting documents ready. When updating your Social Security card, you require your U.S. passport or Certificate of Naturalization. 
  • Download and complete the SS-5 form. You can download the form online or visit your local Social Security Administration office to get it. 
  • Submit your documents to the Social Security Administration.
  • Prepare yourself to answer questions from Social Security staff. The questions are necessary to verify your immigration status and personal information. 

You can update your Social Security records in person, online, or via phone. The purpose of wishing you’re updating the record is what counts. 

Here are the various ways to update your Social Security records. 

1: Fixing errors on your Social Security records:

You can fix errors on your Social Security record with ease. You can even do it in person by visiting the nearest SSA office or online. The information you want to correct will determine if you’ll need a new Social Security card or continue with the old one. 

The SSA office will need you to show proof of the mistake you want to correct. So, ensure you have one. 

2: Changing the name on your social security records: 

You can change your name on the Social Security records under some conditions. 

  • The first is if you got married and needed to change the name. 
  • The second condition is if you’re divorced. 
  • The third condition is if you had a court order to change your name legally.  

You can change the name on your records via any process you deem convenient, though the circumstances surrounding your name change will play a key role. You can change your name online, in person, or via phone. 

A Handy Tip: If the update on your Social Security involves a name change, you will require a new Social Security card. 

Once you’re done changing your name, ask the SSA to mail a new card to you. 

3: Changing the migration or citizenship status in your Social Security records:

Updating your citizenship status after becoming a citizen is very crucial. As explained earlier, employers can use your SSN to check your eligibility to work in the United States. 

So, update your migration status to reflect your new status as a citizen. However, note that this process would require a replacement of your current Social Security card. 

The Social Administration will mail you a new Social Security card once you have updated your status. Furthermore, note that you can update your migration status in person, via the phone, or online. Choose whatever means you think is convenient for you. 

4: Changing the sex identification on your Social Security record: 

You can change the sex you want to be identified by on your Social Security record with ease. You don’t require legal documentation or medical confirmation to prove your gender either. 

Changing the sex identification on your Social Security records would require getting a new Social Security card. The SSA will mail a new card to you once the record has been updated. 

You can change your sex to either male or female. There’s no other gender available. Changing sex identification is possible online or in person. 

5: Changing the contact information on your Social Security record:

Updating the contact information on your social security record is highly important. It will ensure you don’t miss out on crucial information from the SSA. 

The contact information to update includes your email address (if the current one is no longer active), phone number (if the current one is no longer active), and residential address (if you have moved to a new area). 

Updating contact details on a Social Security record is relatively easy. Just log into your account and make the changes. Alternatively, you can contact an SSA representative via phone and request they help to update your account.

A Handy Tip: Update the contact information on your Social Security as quickly as possible to avoid missing out on your benefits. 

3 Things To Do After U.S. Citizenship Beside Updating Your Social Security Card

Updating your Social Security card is one of many vital things you must do after becoming a U.S. citizen. Check out the other things you need to take care of. 

Get your U.S. passport:

Do you have a passport? If you don’t, start applying immediately. The process could take a few weeks, so start applying now if you plan to travel soon. 

The Certificate of Naturalization given to you by USCIS is only a document to confirm that you’re now a U.S. citizen. You cannot use it to travel. So, apply for a passport. 

Since you’re a first-timer, the State Department would need you to apply in person. In addition, they would need your photocopied and original Certificate of Naturalization. But don’t worry; you’ll get back your original certificate.  

Become a registered voter:

In a democratic system, voters are influential and decide who they want as leaders at the federal and state levels. Remember, the economy of the country is a reflection of its leader. So, while acquiring U.S. citizenship, be prepared to become a registered voter. 

Officials will approach you to register to vote during your naturalization ceremony. You can also register at your local community at your convenience. 

Obtain a certificate of citizenship for your children:

Your child or children become U.S. citizens because of your naturalization. But don’t stop there; ensure you get a certificate of citizenship for each of your children. Why? They may require it later in life. 

Your children would require this certificate when they need to replace a lost passport or update their Social Security records. So, while obtaining your citizenship certificate, do the same for your children. You can also use the opportunity to apply for a U.S. passport too. 


Why do I need to update my Social Security card after my citizenship? Firstly, your Social Security record won’t update itself. SSA representatives won’t do it for you either unless you authorize it. 

Updating your Social Security card ensures that your new status (U.S. citizen) reflects in your record. This way, when employers check your eligibility to work in the United States, they won’t find something contrary to what you stated. 

Jason Cooper
Jason Cooper
Jason Cooper is a dedicated news blogger with a zeal for storytelling. Enthusiastically covering current events, he constantly seeks fresh angles and innovative ways to refine his craft and engage his readers.


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