laminating social security cards

just as i finished laminating my social security card, i noticed that it says " do not laminate" on the bottom.
does any one know why not?
will the feds be coming after me? after all, i once cut the tag off a pillow.
how long do you think they can lock me up for?
or should i just move to a country with no extradition treaty?

Well, the card actually belongs to the SSA and not to you personally, so they can make up any rules they like. :slight_smile:

The stated reason is that laminating the card can obliterate or interfere with the built-in security features (as ineffective as they are). In practice though, unless you annoy the bureaucrat, you likely won’t be bothered about it.

We have a laminator at work for luggage tags. I have managed to use it for everyting under the sun except for my social security card, which has been lost since the late 1980’s. But if I had one, I would laminate it in a heartbeat.

The only time I have ever been asked for it was when I was applying for job, but always told them it was mangled in the washing machine and that I had applied for a new one but they never sent it to me. If you did happen to laminate it, it would never show up in a photocopy so by all means laminate it. Driver’s liscenses used to be a piece of paper too, you know.

And for the tag on the pillow, it is perfectly legal for you to cut off after you buy it. If you read carefully, it states, “UNDER PENALTY OF LAW - THIS TAG NOT TO BE REMOVED EXCEPT BY THE CONSUMER.” Even if you don’t eat your pillow(pillow biter :smiley: ), if you own the pillow, that means you.

Well, up until very recently, there were no security precautions in a SS card, it was a cheapo piece of crap piece of cardstock. No magnetic strips, microthreads, or anything. Mine even has the bumpy residue of the perforations from the stock it was torn from.

The “do not laminate” printing is a somewhat recent addition. My SS card (from 1973) lacks the warning. As such, I laminated it at a print shop I worked at :smiley: They are a pain to replace, unlaminated I doubt it would survive a trip through the washing machine.

I also have a SS card that lacks the ‘do not laminate’ warning. Mine’s from 1977.

And yes, it is laminated.

The plot thickens… I just got out my wallet and discovered that my card, issued in 1987 (when I changed my name upon marrying), has the do not laminate tag. So does my son’s, issued around 1990. My daughter’s social security number was issued at the same time as my son’s but we lost the card. We got her a new one last year and the new one doesn’t have the do not laminate dealio.

Can safely laminate my SS card? Issued in 1983, it has the dots where it was torn from and has a “Do not laminate this card” sign. By the way, it also says something about signing it. Does that means I must write my ugly signature in the signature line? How old must I be (I am 18, is that old enough?)?

It is probably safe to laminate it. I just got mine replaced two years ago when I moved to CA, (it is almost impossible to get a job in SoCal without one, and I had lost mine) and mine does not have the do not laminate warning. I keep mine in my wallet, and this thread made me think about how dangerous that is. I am going to get mine laminated as soon as I can.