U.S. issued certificate of coverage

If a Social Security agreement assigns coverage of the employee's work to the United States, the Social Security Administration issues a U.S. Certificate of Coverage. The certificate serves as proof that the employee and employer are exempt from the payment of Social Security taxes to the foreign country.

U.S. employers have traditionally used regular mail and fax to request certificates of coverage for their expatriate employees. Now, employers and self-employed individuals can request certificates online.

What are the advantages of the online service?

  • Faster service   -   eliminates the need for data rekeying
  • Data verification   -   checks data for keying errors or missing information before transmission
  • Email confirmation   -   provides an option to request confirmation of approved certificate requests
  • Online help   -   provides help for completing data fields
  • Up-to-date information   -   online form is always the latest edition

You may access the online Certificate of Coverage service at opts.ssa.gov. If you would like instructions or require assistance with the use of the online forms, please contact the Social Security Administration's Office of Earnings and International Operations by phone at (410) 965-7306, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Eastern U.S. time.

If you have questions or comments regarding certificates of coverage, you can reach us via email at certificate@ssa.gov, or fax (410) 966-1861 or by writing to the following address:

  • Social Security Administration
  • Office of Earnings and International Operations
  • P.O. Box 17741
  • Baltimore, MD 21235-7741

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