On Aug. 9, 2021, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that applicants filing for Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status are now able to apply for a Social Security number (SSN) or replacement card as part of their Adjustment of Status application process. Accordingly, USCIS released a new, revised version of the Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, which incorporates additional questions necessary to apply for an SSN or replacement card. Previously, applicants were required to submit a separate application for an SSN at a Social Security office.

The new version of the Form I-485 is effective immediately and can be used in filings now. However, applicants are permitted to submit either the new Form I-485 or the previous version of Form I-485 until Oct. 13, 2021, after which all applicants will need to submit the new version of the form.

Once the Form I-485 is filed and approved, USCIS will electronically transmit the data to the Social Security Administration. The Social Security Administration will then automatically assign applicants with an original SSN, or issue a replacement card, where requested. The filing fee for Form I-485, presently $1,225.00, remains unchanged following this new development.

This expanded partnership with the Social Security Administration has been introduced by the Biden administration to expedite bureaucratic processes, eliminate extraneous steps for applicants, and enhance collaboration between agencies.