Can I open a bank account?
Bank of America is known for offering accounts to anyone who can prove their identity (i.e. a visa, school id etc.) and has an ITIN, so if you have both of those then head over to your local branch office and get an account.
If you are still unsure about this process please check out this informative post on DAP.
Can I get a bank loan?
This is something that really differs from bank to bank. At one point bank’s would offer house loans to those with ITIN’s and proof of a steady income, however this has been limited over the years.
Can I get a student loan?
Yes, again as said above, this varies from bank to bank. We have confirmation that Sallie Mae has a tuition answer loan that is open to everyone regardless of status. To qualify you need a US Citizen to apply for it and get approved, they then list you as the “student” on the loan. According to this thread on DAP the loan is currently not active, however a member was able to confirm that the loan would again be made available in the coming months.
Citibank also has a loan program that you would need a citizen or LPR co-signer for.
Can I apply for health insurance coverage?
Yes. When filling out the form, indicate that you will be providing your ITIN instead of a SSN. Your immigration status alone will not prevent you from getting insurance.
If you are a student going to school full-time, you should be covered under your parent’s health insurance. However, if this is not the case, check with your school as some offer health insurance plans or actually have well-equipped medical centers.
Can I get a credit card?
Yes, check with your local bank.
Bank of America has a secured visa program. When criticized about giving credit cards to undocumented immigrants, BOA stated:
“We created this pilot program in Los Angeles to help Bank of America customers with little or no credit history build a solid credit history with a leading bank, and to strengthen our relationships with individuals and families we hope will become loyal Bank of America customers in the future as their financial needs grow. As with all our products, the program meets the identification requirements of the USA Patriot Act, U.S. Treasury Department regulations and internal fraud prevention procedures. The bank requires that all applicants provide us approved forms of ID, including an unexpired, U.S. government-issued or foreign government-issued identification card. In fact, while many people legally in our country do not possess Social Security numbers, 84% of the participants in our pilot do. The remaining 16% meet the requirements for government-issued ID as set forth above.”
Most card companies will allow for you to get a credit card as long as you have at least an ITIN. If the online application does not allow for you to submit without a SSN then call the card company and do the application over the phone.
Can I get a cell phone?
Yes, visit your local provider. You will be asked to put down a large deposit if you do not have a SSN (at least $250).
MetroPCS is also a popular choice and does not require a Social Security Number.