Hello and Welcome to the United States
I am here to help you with anything you might need during your time in beautiful Colorado! I am very excited to work with you and help you experience the best possible year as an
Step 1: Social Security Information:
You should wait at least 10 days from the date that you entered the U.S. before completing an application with the Social Security Administration (SSA) for a Social Security Number. The SSA cannot verify your status as an Au Pair with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) until at least 10 days after you arrive. You can check your status online.
What do you need to bring to SSA?
- A completed application for a social security number (form SS-5). This form is available at ssa.gov or you can get it at the SSA office.
- I-94 card (which should be in your passport) (An I-94is a form denoting the Arrival-Departure Record of particular aliens used by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) use Form I-94 )
- DS-2019 form (This form or “certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status” is the basic document used in the administration of the exchange visitor program.)
- Social Security Letter – This letter can be printed from your host family’s extranet account under the placement information tab.
Social Security Administration:
8000 Southpark Lane, Littleton, CO 80120
Open Monday through Friday, 9am-3:30pm
*Located between Broadway and Santa Fe, South on Mineral Avenue
Social Security Administration:
1049 N Academy Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO 80909
Step 2: Bank Account and Stipend Payments:
One of the first things you will need to do after arriving is set up your bank account. All banks are different to what is required to setup an account. Please check with your host family’s bank to see what is required. Please use your Program Participation Letter from your online account.
- Au Pairs should expect to receive your FULL stipend each and every week of your program year on the same payday each week, i.e., Friday or Monday.
- Your stipend payment is $195.75 each week and funds cannot be withheld from this amount FOR ANY REASON. You will receive 51 stipend payments during your program year.
**Au Pairs and Host Families: It is STRONGLY encouraged and in your best interest that all stipend payments are tracked so there are no questions about when/how payments are made.
3: Driver’s License – Required by Colorado****
You need to study for your written driver’s license test. You can also stop by a driver’s license office and pick up a book. I urge you to study it and get very familiar with Colorado’s driving laws. It is a requirement of Colorado for you to take a written and driving test to obtain your license within 90 days of your arrival. (NOTE: Before you get your driver’s license, you MUST get a social security card.)
Colorado Drivers Manual Handbook
http://driving-tests.org/colorado/ practice written test
Download this APP to your phone – DMV Genius: Car, Motorcycle & CD… Elegant eLearning APP
After you’ve studied the manual you can go to a Full Service Driver’s License office to take the written and driving test. (Below I have a list of Full Service Locations)
When you go in to take the written test you will need the following documents.
- Social Security Card
- Passport with I-94 and DS-2019 form
- 1 form for proof of residency like a bank statement or gym membership. Other examples include a typed stipend receipt with name and address on the receipt if you pay your au pair stipend in cash. Save the social security card envelope when you receive your social security card showing your name and address on the envelope. Mail yourself an envelope with your name and address. (Handwritten documents are no longer accepted)
You will take the written test and an eye exam.
After taking the written test and successfully passing you can schedule the drive test appointment. You will need to bring the same documents with you to the drive test as you did for the written test. The drive skills test requires an appointment!!!
Drive tests are scheduled several weeks out!
Once you’ve passed the driving skills test, purchase your driver’s license for $50.50.
Cultural Care Au Pair strongly urges all au pairs to obtain a state license, as it is the only way to make certain that their ability to drive legally in the state is not called into question.
Most au pairs arrive in the U.S. with a valid home country license and an international driver’s permit (also known as an IDP).
In the state of Colorado, the au pair, excluding German & French, have 90 days to obtain a Colorado driver’s license followed by a 30-day grace period. If the au pair has a valid out of country driver’s license and an IDP, she will want to obtain a Colorado state driver’s license within the 90 days. If she is pulled over, she may be ticketed for not having a Colorado state driver’s license. An IDP along with an expired out of country license is not a driver’s license, you will get a ticket.
The benefit of an IDP: – International Driving Permit provides a translation into multiple languages, so that foreign countries’ police and other authorities can easily read your license in their own language.
The IDP has no official status and does not confer any legal privileges. Only a government issued driver’s license grants driving privileges.
|Locations of FULL Service Offices:
Lakewood (Jefferson County) – Map
1881 Pierce St (west side of building, Entrance A)
Lakewood CO 80214
8:00am – 5:00pm Monday – Friday
17924 Cottonwood Drive
Parker, CO 80134
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM Monday – Friday
T/W/Thurs. Written exam can be read orally on these days.
|Littleton: Oakbrook Shopping Center
311 East County Line Road
Littleton, CO 80126
8:00 AM – 5:00 PM Monday – Friday
German & French Au Pairs: Take your license and IDP to the Driver’s License office, pay the fee of $50.50 to receive your Colorado license. You do not need to take any of the state tests.
Step 3: Education Classes
Most schools start classes in August and January, but there are some classes you can start taking right away. Take a look at the link on the side of this web page under education. You will find a list of some of the more popular choice schools in the Denver Metro area. There are other choices, but keep in mind when selecting a school that it must be accredited. If you are uncertain, please call me.
Step 4: Au Pair monthly meetings are mandatory
These meetings are MANDATORY and every effort MUST be made to attend. I try to plan the meetings, at least several months in advance, so that you and your host family can plan accordingly. These meetings are for you to have fun, meet other au pairs and bring up any problems or concerns that you may have. I will try to keep the cost low for our meetings, but if we go to an event or restaurant, you are responsible for your own expenses. I will always provide an estimate on how much you can expect to pay at the meeting. Again, these meetings are for YOU, and I encourage you to let me know what you want me to schedule. Our meeting dates vary depending on the event.
Step 5: TAXES
Tax Information for Au Pairs
Every Au Pair has to file taxes between January and April every year.
I suggest you put away $5 every week for your taxes so that when you do have to file you are prepared to pay. A great way to save for this is to open a savings account along with your checking account and deposit the $5 out of your weekly stipend into the savings account. You will earn a small interest on the money in the account and in most cases you will have enough or more money then you will need for taxes.
Step 6: Last but not least
Go out, make friends and have fun.
Please reach out to me with any questions or concerns, I am always happy to help!
Monday, 14 November 2016 7:48 PM