Social Insurance Number (SIN)

If you're going to work in Canada, you will need to apply for a Social Insurance Number. Find out what it is and how you get it. 

What is a Social Insurance Number?

A Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a nine-digit number that you need to work in Canada or to have access to government programs and benefits. You should apply for a SIN if you plan to work in Canada. Be sure you understand the eligibility requirements to work on campus and off campus.

How do I get it?

You  apply in person at a Service Canada Centre for a SIN. Be sure to take the required documents, which are described in detail below.

Where do I get it?  

The closest Service Canada Centre to UBC is the West Broadway Centre. You can also search for a location near you.

  • 1263 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC
  • Hours: 8:30am – 4:00pm, Monday to Friday
  • Take the 99 B-Line bus, get off at Granville Street, and walk three blocks east

How you apply for a SIN depends on your situation

To find out how to apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN), pick the situation that applies to you to see what documents and steps you need to take before going to a Service Canada Centre to apply.

STEP 1
From the list below, pick the first one that applies to you.
"I have a ...
"
STEP 2
Get the documents you need
STEP 3
Present the document(s) below in person at a Service Canada office
  Proof of Enrolment1 Written job offer with specific information2 ISA verification of an on-campus job offer3 CIC confirmation to work off campus4  
A) WORK PERMIT No No No No
  • Work permit
B) STUDY PERMIT that has "may accept employment" or "may work" written anywhere on it No No No No
  • Study permit
C) ON CAMPUS JOB OFFER (UBC is the employer)
+
STUDY PERMIT that does NOT have "may accept employment" or "may work" written anywhere on it
Yes Yes No No
  • Study Permit
  • Proof of Enrolment
  • Job offer letter with specific information
D) ON CAMPUS JOB OFFER (UBC is NOT the employer)
+
STUDY PERMIT that does NOT have "may accept employment" or "may work" written anywhere on it
Yes Yes, submit to an International Student Advisor (ISA) for an "ISA verification of an on-campus job offer" Yes No
  • Study Permit
  • Proof of Enrolment
  • ISA verification of an on-campus job offer
E) STUDY PERMIT that does NOT say, "may accept employment" or "may work" written anywhere on it, but I am *eligible to work off-campus Yes, submit  with a case-specific enquiry for a "CIC confirmation to work off campus" No No Yes
  • Study permit
  • CIC confirmation to work off campus

Keeping your SIN valid

Make sure you keep your SIN valid by renewing your SIN each time you extend your temporary residency in Canada (for example, when you extend your study permit or get a post-graduation work permit).

To extend or amend your SIN, follow the same application instructions.