Government system problems affecting SSN and driver's license applications

Date of Announcement: August 27, 2012

Dear Students and Scholars,

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has discovered defects in the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) database used by the Social Security Administration and PennDOT to verify the immigration status of F and J nonimmigrants. Currently the system cannot find SEVIS records or verify active status.

DHS is working to determine the nature of the problem. Please consider waiting until after the system fix has been applied to apply for a Social Security Number or a driver's license. If you must apply now, expect a long delay. Please be aware that the system problems cannot be fixed by ISSS.

Please check our website later for any updates from DHS.


The ISSS Staff

Note to F-1 and J-1 students and scholars who have applied for a SSN or driver's license and were referred back to Penn for SEVIS related problems:

We have been informed that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will work directly with the respective PennDOT (DMV) or SSA office.

Update September 10, 2012:

The Department of Homeland Security has identified the issue causing the SAVE data transmittal problem, and scheduled implementation of a system patch that will be operational on September 14, 2012. The patch should resolve the issue between SEVIS and SAVE. The issue seems only to affect F nonimmigrants and not J exchange visitors.

DHS recommends that the most efficient option is to wait until September 14, 2012 to apply or reapply for a benefit at PennDOT (DMV) or Social Security Administration (SSA).

If you must apply now and you are referred back to Penn for SEVIS related problems, please continue to follow the instructions above.