You must wait for your adoption to be finalized before you can apply for a social security number for your child. However, an Adoption Tax Identification Number (ATIN) can serve the same purpose as a social security number in the interim. An ATIN is a temporary nine-digit number that can be obtained through the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) using Form W-7A. You can contact the IRS at 1-800-tax-form and request Form W-7A, which is good for two years from the date of issue. Once the adoption is finalized, a certified copy of the Order of Adoption (which you get at the final hearing) can be used to obtain a social security card, passport, etc. in place of a birth certificate. Once you receive your child’s social security number, do not continue to use the ATIN.