desk signingThe Social Insurance Number (SIN) is:

  • A nine-digit number that you need to work in Canada and access government programs/benefits.
  • Issued to newcomers in the form of 1 paper document per person. Production of plastic SIN cards ended in 2014.
  • Sponsors must explain the importance of the SIN, it’s purpose, when they will need to share it, and when not to share it. It is their responsibility to protect their SIN.

How to Apply

Newcomers will likely receive their SIN at the airport, and therefore no application will be required. However, if the SIN is not received upon arrival, an in-person application at a Service Canada Centre is required. There is no fee to apply for a SIN.
Find a Service Canada Centre by clicking here


It is not necessary to complete a form if you apply in-person at a Service Canada Centre.

Primary Document:

Applicants will need to provide their original Confirmation of Permanent Residence AND foreign passport/ travel document (photocopies are not accepted). 

For more information:

Visit the Service Canada Website or you can phone Service Canada: 1 800-206-7218 (select option "3") Monday to Friday from 8:30am - 4:30pm EST.

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