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How to change your last name after getting married

How to change your last name after getting married

August 02, 2022

Congratulations on getting married! If you're excited about becoming the new Mrs., keep in mind- your name does not change automatically because you're married! Changing your name legally requires a number of steps beyond changing your name on Facebook. When I got married and was ready to change my name, I somehow managed to do all the steps pretty much in the exact opposite order as you're supposed to. Aka, it took me twice as long. I'd love to help you avoid that! So here is how to change your name in three easy steps. 

How to change your last name after getting married

  1. Most importantly, you need to have an original or certified marriage license. This is different than the pretty one you sign at your wedding, and needs to have the raised seal. Photocopies don't work, unfortunately.

  2. Once you have the marriage license, you'll want to take that to your local Social Security office to change your name on your Social Security card. You'll need to fill out a new application to get your name changed, and provide that with your marriage license. Your Social Security number won't change, just your name.

  3. Once you've got your new Social Security card, it's time to update your drivers license. The process varies by state so you'll want to check their website, but at a minimum, bring your current license, marriage certificate, and Social Security card. 

Now you get to change your name everywhere else! Here's a short list of people/companies you'll likely want to notify of your name change

  • Current employer
  • Bank accounts
  • Credit cards
  • Retirement accounts (consider updating your beneficiary information while you're at it)
  • Passport
  • Utilities
  • Mortgage company or landlord
  • Insurance companies (good time to review coverage while you're at it!)

A couple pro tips:

-Follow these steps in order to avoid wasting your time.

-Keep in mind that some of these documents will be mailed to you, so if you'll be needing your ID soon (e.g. if you're going on a honeymoon where you need a passport) wait to change your name until you're back.

-If you do need to set up or make changes to any accounts during this process, be sure to fully disclose your current legal name and your new married name to avoid confusion or paperwork schnafoos. 

Good luck, and congratulations on getting hitched! :)

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