Social Security

If you reside in Chile and have questions regarding services provided by the Social Security Administration (SSA), you must contact the SSA Federal Benefits Unit (FBU) located in Argentina.  For more information on their services and how to contact them, please visit their webpage at:

For comprehensive information on SSA’s services abroad, please visit SSA’s webpage Service Around the World.

If you are already receiving SSA benefits payments, there will be no change in the method of distribution of those payments.

Please DO NOT visit the Embassy seeking Federal Benefits assistance before previously contacting SSA regarding your inquiry.  If SSA asks you to come to the Embassy for a particular service, or you need any of the services listed below, you must previously schedule your online appointment through the following link (chose option Notary and Other Services)

Receiving U.S. federal benefits via direct deposit is mandated by U.S. law. Social Security Beneficiaries in Chile have several options for receiving benefits via direct deposit:

1. Direct Deposit to a U.S. Bank Account – You will need to supply the U.S. account information to the Federal Benefits Unit. The best way to provide your U.S. Bank information to the Federal Benefits Unit is by using our online form.

2. Social Security Administration has an agreement with 2 Chilean Banks: Bci and Banco Estado. Bci offers an account in USD and Banco Estado an account in pesos. The monthly bank charges are approximately 6 USD.

Monthly payments can be directly deposited into the beneficiaries’ designated Chilean bank accounts. This system increases the speed with which you can receive your benefits (almost always by the fifth day of the month) and is significantly more secure than the mailing of paper checks, which are subject to theft and loss.

We strongly encourage you to consider this option to avoid delays in your monthly payments.

For information on opening an account with BCI, click here

For information on opening an account with BancoEstado, click here

If you would like to open a DD in Chile, please contact Social Security using the online form 


3. Direct Express –

Only First-time applicants for a Social Security Number who are U.S. Citizens or Legal Permanent Residents of the United States and are over 12 years old may submit their applications through the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Santiago.

See the following link for further information on documentation and scheduling your online appointment.

For any other request regarding Social Security Number cards, such as obtaining a replacement card, or first-time applicants under age 12, you must contact the Federal Benefits Unit in Argentina using the online form.


If you need proof that you are receiving Social Security benefits, you can request a benefits verification letter (certification). This letter is sometimes called a “budget letter,” a “benefits letter,” a “proof of income letter,” or a “proof of award letter”.

To request a verification (certification) letter at the U.S. Embassy in Santiago, please request a “notarial and other services” appointment by clicking here.

On the day of your appointment you must submit:

  • Valid U.S. passport or Chilean ID.
  • Current documentation from Social Security indicating the monthly amount you receive.
  • $50.00 USD notary fee (you may pay in cash dollars, pesos, or credit card.  No redcompra or checks are accepted)

Notice: you must bring documentation that demonstrates your pension.  We are unable to provide this service unless you do so. 

If you don’t have any documentation from Social Security stating your current income, please use the online form to request it from SSA.