How to Change a Name on a SIN Card

Related Articles

As of March 31, 2014, the government of Canada no longer issues Social Insurance Number, or SIN, cards. If your name has changed, you are still required to update your SIN record within 60 days. You will receive a confirmation letter and should destroy your old SIN card.

Visit a Service Canada Centre

To amend your SIN record, you are generally required to visit a Service Canada office. You must provide an original primary document and an original supporting document.

Acceptable primary documents are:

  • Canadian birth certificate
  • Certificate of Canadian citizenship
  • Permanent resident card
  • Work permit
  • Study permit

Acceptable secondary documents include:

  • Marriage certificate
  • Divorce decree
  • Legal change-of-name certificate
  • Adoption order

The documents you need to present depend on your citizenship status. For example, a permanent resident can give a Confirmation of Permanent Residence accompanied with a travel document for the first year of residency. If the individual has been a permanent resident for more than a year, she must show a permanent resident card.

According to the government of Canada website, your SIN record is updated during your visit to the Service Canada office in most cases.

Apply By Mail

In some cases, individuals may apply by mail. These cases include:

  • When the individual is outside of Canada
  • When the individual lives more than 100 kilometers from a Service Canada office. To determine if you are too far away to apply for a name change in person, verify your postal code.
  • When the individual cannot get to a Service Canada office and cannot get there with the assistance of another person. 

To determine if you can apply by mail, call 800-206-7218 and choose option 3. To apply by mail, complete the Application for a Social Insurance Number form and mail it along with original documents.

If you are applying in person to modify the name on your SIN record, you do not need to fill out the application form.

About the Author

Catherine Lovering has written about business, tax, careers and pets since 2006. Lovering holds a B.A. (political science), LL.B. (law) and LL.L. (civil law).