The 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 also need a SIN to file Canadian taxes.*
*If you are not eligible for a SIN, you can apply for an Individual Tax Number (ITN) for tax purposes.
International students need one of the following documents to apply for a SIN in person at a Service Canada Office:
• A work permit e.g. Co-op, post-graduation work permit; OR
• A study permit that indicates you “may accept employment” or “may work ” in Canada*
* If you are eligible to work on or off campus and your study permit does not state that you “may accept employment” or “may work” in Canada, you must apply on paper for an amendment to your study permit before you can apply for a SIN. There is no fee for this application and should be mailed to the Operations Support Centre (OSC) in Ottawa. Please check the processing times for “Amendment of Valid Temporary Resident Documents”.
If your study permit has: “This permit does not permit the holder to engage in off campus employment in Canada”, printed on it and you have changed your program of study, you must apply online to change the conditions of your study permit .Changing the conditions is the same as extending/renewing study permit application with similar processing times and an application fee of $150.
Please note if your study pemrit will be expiring soon, when you apply to extend/renew it, the new study pemrit automatically indicates you “may accept employment” or “may work” in Canada.
Applying for SIN:
Service Canada requires individuals to apply in-person at a Service Canada Centre with your original documents.
The easiest location to access from U of T Scarborough is:
Toronto-Scarborough Service Canada Centre
200 Town Centre Court
Canada Centre, 1st Floor
Scarborough, ON. M1P 4X9
Open Monday-Friday from 8:30am-4pm
Right documents to apply:
• valid passport and
• valid work permit OR study permit that indicates you “may accept employment” or “may work” in Canada
15 minutes if you have the required documents in order.
You will receive a letter confirming that you have been issued a temporary SIN.
Your SIN expires on the date indicated in the “expires on” field of the letter. This expiry date is based on the permit that authorizes you to work in Canada. Each time you extend your study or work permits and you want to continue working or file your taxes, you have to renew you SIN with the new or renewed permits.