Hello! You are probably considering choosing Saskatchewan province for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) so it is good you know all you will be needing. The Social Insurance Number is about the most essential and foremost code you will need as an immigrant to the Saskatchewan province of Canada. This article will help you to understand your brewing questions like-
- What is a SIN?
- What are the requirements to get one?
- Where do I get one?
- What is the use of a SIN?
- How to protect my SIN?
WHAT IS A SIN?
The SIN of Canada is similar to the SSN of the US. SIN simply refers to your Social Insurance Number. The nine-digit code that is grouped into three, stands to represent you on the government database to allow you access to their services. Although, Canadian law has limited the use of SIN in the private sector, all temporary or permanent citizens of Canada are expected to have a SIN code.
The first number of SIN is a unique means of identification of who you are and where you are in the country. For a temporary citizen, their SIN begins with 9. The special feature of that is that it comes with an expiration date. For a permanent resident, the SIN begins with the number assigned to their province like Saskatchewan which is 6. It is an exclusive code that is unique and personalized for each citizen in the country.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR GETTING A SIN?
The first requirement for acquiring a SIN is to be 12 or above. However, in a province where most of the children are underage, parents are free to apply on their behalf.
Asides from age, the other prerequisites of obtaining a SIN largely depend on the status of the person in Saskatchewan. Someone planning toward being a permanent resident would need;
- The primary identification number (PIN) could be either a permanent resident card, confirmation of permanent residence, or record of landing issued by CIC.
- Any document that has your legal name and date of birth such as a passport, a provincial ID card, or any other government-related ID.
- A supporting document is also required to show your current name in use. In the case of a change of name by marriage or divorce, a marriage or divorce certificate would be needed for verification. An adoption certificate is also required if any.
- Lastly, your home or office address is needed when you register for your SIN online. Your original address is needed to enable you to receive the confirmation of the SIN letter.
WHERE TO GET ONE?
In the convenience of your home, you can apply for a SIN with just an internet connection and a smart device or PC. This method of application was begun in 2020 due to the pandemic. If all the required documents are provided with no hitches, your SIN will be delivered to you by mail in the span of 15 workdays.
The application could also be done by mailing all required documents to the social insurance registration office. Applicants should expect a letter by mail containing their documents and their SIN. If the documents were incomplete, a letter to guide you on the appropriate steps will be sent.
If you feel anxious about these other methods, you can try applying in person at the service office in Saskatchewan. Depending on your location, there are about 20 in Saskatchewan. If you apply in person, your SIN will be processed and given to you on the same day with the necessary documents provided.
WHAT IS THE USE OF A SIN?
Your social insurance number is what the government uses to identify you as a citizen. It is what allows you to access their programs like Employment Insurance, Canadian Pension Program, and Child Tax Benefits.
As of 2013, it became mandatory to provide employers with the 9-pin code before employment. It is illegal to work in Canada without a SIN.
It is also used to file personal taxes and track taxes owed. When completing federal tax forms, your SIN is used to keep track of the taxes owed and your earnings as well.
Also, in any bank, your code is needed to create an account that can incur interest over time.
Although SIN is important, it is not required in certain activities. It is not needed in applying to rent a property or lease a house from a landlord. Telephone plans, car rentals, and estate plans do not require your SIN either.
HOW TO PROTECT MY SIN.
As of 2014, the government stopped issuing Social Security Numbers on plastic cards and began issuing them on paper. This was done as a measure to protect citizens from the surge in the theft of the confidential code.
Your SIN holds all the vital information about you and if in the wrong hands could be used malevolently. It is important to guide your code judiciously only disclosing it for important reasons.
It is advised to not move around with your SIN document, not reply to emails that request it, and not disclose it through phone calls- all these should be adhered to for safety. Also, once a paper that contains your SIN has expired, don’t be tempted to recycle it instead shred it.
In a case where your SIN is stolen, it can be used to commit identity fraud, or even worse, it could incur taxes greater than your income rating. It is advised in this scenario that you act quickly by reporting to the police.
Also, reach out to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501. You should also visit a service center in your vicinity with proof that your SIN has been stolen and a police report. Upon your visit, a new SIN will be issued by an official. However, a new SIN does not annul the old one and it causes an increased risk of identity fraud.
If at any point in time, you feel uncomfortable giving out your SIN, don’t give it. Ensure to voice your discomfort to the official and provide a different means of identification instead.