Did you know you’re not supposed to laminate your Social Security card? Some will argue that this is an urban legend—like the one about the lady who put her poodle in the microwave to dry its fur faster after she gave it a bath. It’s nearly impossible to find proof that this has ever occurred, but the Social Security Administration makes it quite clear: Do not laminate your card.
You’re asked for it often enough that you should have it memorized, but if you do keep it in your wallet or purse, the Social Security Administration doesn’t want you to laminate it because it prevents detection of many of the safety and security features integrated into the card itself. They’d prefer that you just put it in a plastic sleeve—just like your fishing license.
A Few More Little-Known Facts
It’s settled. Now we’re all aware that you’re not supposed to laminate your Social Security card. But, what happens if it gets ripped or damaged? You’ll want to get a duplicate. It’s easy to do online. Just head online here and create your account. Just about anyone can use this online service, as long as you’re a US citizen over the age of 18 with a mailing address.
Keep in mind that this service is only to get a duplicate. You’ll have to head elsewhere online if you need to make a name change request or any other change to your Social Security card. You also will need a driver’s license or a state-issued identification card. Here’s a list of states that already participate.
The Old-Fashioned Way
If you can’t jump through these online hoops, just head to the Social Security office nearest you. Make sure to bring along your birth certificate, a US driver’s license, and your passport.
- You can request a replacement card no more than 3 times in a single year.
- You’re allowed to have up to 10 replacements in your lifetime.
Yes, you read that correctly. The magic number is 10. No more replacements after that. Thankfully, you shouldn’t have all that many requests to see the original card itself. The most likely reason you’ll be asked to produce it is if you are starting a new job.
Most of the time, it can live safely protected in along with your other important personal documents. One thing’s for sure: It doesn’t have to accompany people the way their fishing or hunting license does. You don’t want to be caught doing either of these activities without your license.
The Anchor Effect
Here’s the part you’ve been waiting for ever since you read the headline. What, you’ve been wondering, do fishing licenses and anchors have to do with your business?
An anchor keeps a fishing boat where it needs to be. Everybody in the boat fishing wants to have a license because—well, because it’s the law and the right thing to do. Money generated from license sales helps fund the upkeep of local lakes and streams.
Where do you fit in? Fishing and hunting licenses are only kept for a single season, so who wants to go through the trouble to find a place to have them laminated? It’s much easier to keep it in a license holder.
A license holder that came from you. With your name and logo on it. The license holder becomes a constant reminder that associates your business with fishing or hunting. It’s an anchor that keeps customers from wandering away.
Keep your brand in front of fishermen (and women) and hunters. Help them protect their licenses. You’ll like the low cost for this marketing investment.