Social Insurance Number

Your Social Insurance Number (SIN)

You should apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN) as soon as possible after you arrive in Canada. A SIN is a nine-digit number provided by Service Canada on behalf of the federal government. You will need this number to work in Canada or to apply for government programs and benefits.

You must present one of the following documents when you apply for a SIN:

1. Permanent residents:

  • Permanent Resident Card from Citizenship and Immigration Canada. This is the only acceptable document if your permanent residence application was processed in Canada.
  • Confirmation of Permanent Residence AND visa counterfoil affixed to your foreign passport or travel document.

2. Temporary residents:

  • Work permit from Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
  • Study permit from Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
  • Visitor record from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, indicating that you are authorized to work in Canada.
  • Diplomatic identity card and a note of permission of employment issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

To apply for a SIN, simply gather the documents you need and take them to the Guelph Service Canada Centre. The Service Canada agent will need to see the original documents (not copies). If your application and documents are in order, you will get a SIN in one visit.