How to get a credit card without a social security number.
While not the easiest thing to do, find how to get a credit card without a social security number. A number of banks, online lenders or fintech companies as well as other companies will offer solutions. They will provide a credit card to people with no SSN (social security number) provided certain conditions are met. Major banks such as American Express, Chase, BofA amd other provide programs too. Learn where to get a credit card with a social security number or tax identifier.
The fact is that most credit card applications or banks usually ask for your Social Security number. If you do not have a SSN number, then find some things you can do below get around that challenge. As the requirement for a social security number can make it challenging for immigrants, people with no bank account, college students, work visa holders and others to open an account.
You may see the requirement for a SSN on so many applications that you have come to believe you can't apply for a credit card without the number. The reality, however, is that not all banks or lenders ask for Social Security numbers. In addition to that, there are also some alternative products you can use as well, such as secured or prepaid credit cards. If you don't have a number, you can find specific cards to apply for that don't ask for this information.
Why do banks, lenders and credit card companies need your Social Security number?
Card issuers, most of which are banks, ask for Social Security numbers because the USA Patriot Act requires them to verify the applicant’s identify. When financial services are found to be used by terrorists, the law requires banks to answer for it. This social security number requirement makes it easier for bank authorities to uncover terrorist use and money laundering.
Identities can be verified in other ways, however, even if they are less convenient for issuers. Some credit card issuers and banks are willing to try these inconvenient methods in order to gain customers. While the most attractive card offers may not be open to you, you can get a card, even without a SSN, to start off on.
Applying with your Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)
If you're a documented foreigner working in the US and you file taxes, the IRS gives you an ITIN. But you often need to apply for it using a W-7 form from the IRS. The card issuer may ask to see your passport and visa, and you may also need you to have an existing checking account with them.
However, it's important to keep in mind that an ITIN isn't the only requirement that many banks and lenders have. Most banks will also indicate that the applicant will also need a credit history that is based on their transactions in the US - borrowing and spending in the US in order to get a card. This is when a secured, pre-paid card may be a great option for applicants with no social security number (SSN).
Banks also do not allow your data to be “transferred” from overseas. That requirement can also be a challenge for many low income households, immigrants, young people or newcomers to the country.
If you're new to the country, you're likely to not have a credit history. There are options such as pre-paid/secured cards or even credit builder loans. Capital One offers secured or prepaid credit cards to such applicants -- you leave a deposit with the bank for the spending limit that you want on your card. The amount of the deposit tends to be fairly small (a couple hundred dollars or so), but the downside is you will have very limited borrowing capacity. However there are loans available for borrowers with no bank account.
Secured credit cards can be an option for people with no social security number, but the upfront collateral is often times difficult. In addition, even a couple hundred dollar deposit can be challenging for low income households, immigrants, or the unbanked.
While this is not the exact same as a credit card that allows you to borrow with no collateral, a secured card can be a good alternative. Once you get such a card, you're able to build your credit history in order to qualify for a regular, unsecured credit card. Or look into credit builder loan products.
Which card issuers should you try if you don't have a Social Security number?
If you have an American Express card in another country, you are able to log into your account and take advantage of a service known as the American Express Global Card Relationship Program to look at your choices for a US card. As long as your overseas Amex card account is in good standing, you could be a shoo-in for a US-based card.
Citibank doesn't offer the smooth experience that American Express does, but it does allow you to put in a request to have them consider your overseas Citibank card history or account history for a card in the US. You'll need to have a well-established relationship with the bank in another country to take advantage of this program, which is called Citibank Global Banking.
Other banks have limited offerings when it comes to applications without Social Security numbers. Bank of America and Chase both offer card products to applicants who only have ITINs, but they require good credit scores.
If you're an international student or a professional worker in the US, or if you are on a work visa, you can apply for a Deserve EDU Mastercard or Visa. They have options for Students with no credit history, ITIN, or Social Security number. They also offer credit cards for people who are in the US on a work visa or new immigrants. The Deserve EDD credit card may be the best option for people with no SSN.
You simply prove your identity by offering the issuer information about your address and where you're enrolled to study or your employer The card has great advantages, as well - there is no annual fee, you make 1% cashback on all your spending, and there are no fees applied to foreign transactions.
If you've tried the different ways listed here to obtain a credit card with no Social Security number and haven't found success, a prepaid card could turn out to be your financial tool of choice. Whether you need to shop online or in person, prepaid cards are accepted everywhere, and they even offer some protection against theft. You don't build your credit history with prepaid cards, however.
Last, but not least, are free non-profit credit counseling agencies. They can give advice to immigrants, foreigners, students and others. As part of the assistance they provide, they can discuss social security numbers, review lending products and credit card offers, and so much more. Locate free credit counseling near you.
Conclusion on credit card for people with no SSN
The bottom line is that it is possible to get a credit card without a Social Security number. It allows unbanked people, or even immigrants, to help to build credit. If nothing else, a secured card, which does not require a SSN, could be available to you.
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