If you travel to Canada as a non-resident, you will need a Social Insurance Number (SIN) in order to work.
The SIN is a nine-digit number that is issued by ‘Service Canada’ – part of the Canadian Government and is needed for tax purposes and various government benefits.
Countless workers in Canada have their SIN stolen or misplaced each year, so don’t worry if this happens to you!
What to do if you’ve lost your SIN?
Here’s what happens if you lose your SIN card. If you lose your SIN, Service Canada will only give you a brand new number if there is evidence of fraud.
If you lose or don’t remember your SIN, it can be located on your Canadian tax return. Alternatively, you can contact Service Canada to request confirmation of it.
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What to do if your SIN has been stolen?
If you believe your SIN has been stolen, then you are potentially a victim of fraud.
According to the Government of Canada, a sign that your SIN is being used fraudulently could be if the CRA sends you a Notice of Reassessment about undeclared earnings.
This can highlight that someone is wrongfully using your SIN number.
You should then file reports with both the Canadian Police and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre, as well as Equifax Canada and TransUnion Canada, to inform them you are potentially a victim of identity fraud.
Before visiting a Service Canada Centre to apply for a new card, make sure to double-check your bank and credit statements for any suspicious activity and to find out if someone has been using your SIN number.
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How can you avoid misplacing your SIN?
There are a number of ways to minimise the risk of losing your SIN number, for example:
- if you use a SIN card, avoid carrying it in your wallet/purse, always store it in a secure place
- don’t use your SIN as a means of identifying yourself
- only show your SIN when you know that it is a legal requirement – like for your employer
- never reply to emails that ask for personal information like your SIN
- do not recycle pieces of paper with your SIN on it – try to shred them if possible
Got Questions about your SIN?
No worries! The team at Taxback can help you out! Their Live Chat team can answer your tax questions anytime 24/7.