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Social Security Number Identity Theft

Stealing a social security number (ssn) is a a very serious crime and it is form of identity theft. When it happens, victims of this crime may think that the best solution is to get a new ssn and they may be right, especially where the identity thief is stalking or tracking the victim as is often the case in domestic abuse situations. Before you opt for a new number, please consider the following information:

  • Report the theft of your social security number to the Internet Crime Complaint Center at http://www.ic3.gov. The report will be distributed to the relevant federal, state and local authorities;
  • Check out suggestions from the Federal Trade Commission on what to do in case of identity theft at http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0014-identity-theft;
  • Your stolen ssn may be used for someone to gain employment, defraud banks, retailers, the IRS and other government agencies all of which could lead to hurting your credit worthiness;
  • To start the process, you have to go into your local social security office to meet with a social security representative and to fill out an application;
  • But getting a new ssn is not always so easy. You have to prove that the theft of your ssn has caused you hardship in the form of denied home mortgages, problems with law enforcement or the IRS or bad credit that cannot be cleaned up;
  • Even if you get a new ssn, the old one will remain valid. You will have to keep monitoring it for future incidents;
  • A new ssn will have a completely blank history and that will effect your ability to get credit using the new ssn;
  • Whether you are given a ssn is up to the Social Security Administration;
  • Even if you are given a new ssn, the old one will never completely go away even if it goes dormant. The Social Security Administration never invalidates a ssn once it has been issued.

If you are a victim of social security number identity theft, contact Pine Street Legal at (215) 345-9214, nkanter@pinestreetlegal.com to help you navigate this difficult problem.