Social Security/Federal Benefits
Neither the U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi nor the Consulate General in Dubai has a Federal Benefits Unit but both can accept Social Security card applications and forward them to the regional overseas office for processing. Processing takes approximately 6-8 months from the time of application and the card will be mailed to the P.O. Box listed on the application form. Please note that applying for a Social Security card in the U.S. takes approximately two weeks and may be a better option for those with plans to travel back to the United States. To apply for a Social Security Card at the Embassy in Abu Dhabi, please make an online appointment and choose "Request notarial and other services not listed above"
To apply for a social security card for a child under age 12, only one parent is required to appear and he or she must bring the following:
- Social Security Application SS-5FS (PDF229 K). Please list a UAE mailing address and sign the application.
- The child's original foreign birth certificate and 1 photocopy
- The child's original Consular Report of Birth Abroad and 1 photocopy
- The child's passport and 1 photocopy of the biographic page and any amendments
- Both parents' passports and 1 photocopy of each of the biographic page and any amendments
There is a 4 AED charge per copy if photocopies are not provided.
The child does not need to appear in person unless he/she is over age 12. For any applicant over age 12 there is an additional questionnaire and sworn statement that must be completed at the Embassy.
The Embassy will send in your application to the overseas citizens office of the Social Security Administration. The Social Security card will be sent about 4 months from the time of application to the P.O. Box address you list on the SS-5FS form. Please note that applying for a Social Security Card in the U.S. is about a week process and you may choose to do this instead.
All U.S. citizen males must register within 30 days of their eighteenth birthday. For more information, you may contact Selective Service System, P.O. Box 818, North Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A. 60197-4638. Alternatively, you may register on-line at the Selective Service Web Page.
U.S. citizens traveling or residing in UAE are subject to UAE laws.
Dual nationality, the simultaneous possession of two citizenships, is possible because there are no uniform rules of international law relating to the acquisition of nationality. Each country has its own laws regarding nationality, and its nationality is conferred upon individuals on the basis of its own independent domestic policy. Individuals may have dual nationality by choice or by automatic operation of these different and sometimes conflicting laws.
While recognizing the existence of dual nationality and permitting Americans to have other nationalities, the U.S. government also recognizes the problems which it may cause. Claims of other countries upon dual-national U.S. citizens often place them in situations where their obligations to one country are in conflict with the laws of the other. In addition, their dual nationality may hamper efforts to provide U.S. diplomatic and consular protection to them when they are abroad.
The Government of the United Arab Emirates does not recognize dual nationality. Children of UAE fathers automatically acquire UAE citizenship at birth and must enter the UAE on UAE passports. UAE authorities have confiscated U.S. passports of UAE/U.S. dual nationals in the past. This act does not constitute loss of U.S. citizenship, but should be reported to the U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi or the U.S. Consulate General in Dubai. In addition to being subject to all UAE laws, U.S. citizens who also hold UAE citizenship may also be subject to other laws that impose special obligations on citizens of the UAE.
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