Whether you take your partner’s last name or hyphenate, you’ll need to let, well, everyone know about your name change. It can definitely feel like a hassle, especially after planning a wedding. But it’s also a chance to tell, well, everyone that you just married your best friend! Telling everyone is a long process, though, so we created this handy list so you wouldn’t forget anyone. In this post, we’ll discuss the 11 updates to make after you change your last name.
Before you can make any of these updates, you’ll need copies of your marriage license. Most sources recommend ordering three certified copies along with the original. To speed up the process, you can also request that the copies are sent to you along with the original, instead of ordering copies separately. (Don’t worry, you can always order additional copies down the road.)
Many of these updates can be completed online, and most of them are free. But each process is different, and for any local changes (like your driver’s license), you’ll always want to refer to your city’s website or local office for specific instructions. If you’ve also moved since getting married, you can update your address when you change your last name on any accounts or documents.
1. Your Social Security Card
After you change your last name, the first thing you should do is let the government know by applying for a new Social Security card. Your Social Security number will stay the same, but your card will be updated with your new name. As of March 17, 2020, the Social Security Administration Office has paused face-to-face service until further notice due to COVID-19. That means you’ll have to fill out the application and submit your request online. In the future, when face-to-face service is offered, you can also bring your application to your local Social Security branch.
2. Your Driver’s License
Cost: Varies by city and state
Next, you’ll want to update your driver’s license. If you’ve also moved, this is the perfect time to update that information with the DMV as well. The process and cost will vary based on state. Some states don’t charge if you’re changing your name after marriage, but will charge if you’re changing your name for other reasons. In most states, you can file your application online. Ultimately, you’ll want to research the cost and process in your specific city and state. If you have any questions, you can always head to your local DMV location and get your answers.
3. Your Passport
Cost: Up to $160
Your passport is another important item to update–if your passport doesn’t match your name, you won’t be able to travel internationally. Changing your name on the passport is considered a correction, and you can only apply for a new passport via mail. If your current passport is less than a year old, it won’t cost you anything unless you want expedited shipping, which costs $60. If your passport is more than a year old, it will cost you $160. Shipping is still free unless you want expedited shipping. Again, that costs $60, bringing your total to $220. You can calculate your total cost using the Travel.State.Gov’s fee calculator.
If you’re traveling for your honeymoon and intend on using your passport, make sure whatever passport you use matches your name on the ticket. If you won’t have your new passport in time, use your maiden name to book any flights. You will need a marriage certificate to get an updated passport, so if you want to use your new passport for your honeymoon, apply ASAP and rush the shipping.
4. Your Bank Accounts & Credit Cards
It’s always important for your bank and credit card companies to have up-to-date information. Each company will follow a slightly different process, but most will let you do so online or via phone. However, most will require a copy of your marriage license and a form of identification, like your updated driver’s license. So while this is an important step to take after you change your last name, you’ll have to wait until you receive your new license or passport.
When you’re filling out your change-of-name request, this is also a good time to update your address, too, if you’ve moved since you got married. And don’t forget to update any of your store credit or debit cards!
5. Your Automatic Payments
If you make automatic payments for any of your bills, you’ll need to update your credit card and banking information with your new name. Additionally, if you have credit cards saved on various websites, like Amazon, you’ll need to update your name on those, too. And if you moved–you guessed it! Update your address as well.
6. Your Mortgage and Utilities
As with other businesses and services, your mortgage company may want to see a copy of your marriage license or driver’s license. But the process should be similar to the other processes: apply online or give them a call. Your utilities will need to know your updated name, too. And if your utilities companies have your banking or credit card information, don’t forget to update those details when you change your name!
7. Your Debtors & Investment Accounts
Banks and credit card companies aren’t the only ones who need to know you changed your last name. If you have any investment accounts or outstanding debt, you’ll want to contact those companies, too. It will most likely be free, but you’ll probably need a copy of your marriage license and each process may be slightly different. So be sure to research online or give them a call ahead of time.
8. Your Work Information
This should be an easy one! It won’t cost you anything, and you can probably just fill out a simple form for HR for their records. You may also need to notify IT if you want to update your email address, but that’s up to you. Some individuals keep their original email address for convenience, and just update their email signature instead. Of course, you can always forward any incoming emails from your old address to your new one. But again, that’s up to you.
9. Your Doctor & Other Medical Professionals
Most medical professionals will let you change your information online or over the phone. If you have an upcoming visit, you can always just let them know in person. This isn’t particularly time-sensitive, but they should always have your most recent information. And the good news is it won’t cost you anything!
10. Your Voter Registration Office
If you want to vote in any upcoming elections, you’ll need to have your current name on the registration list. (You’ll also need an updated address, too, so don’t forget to change that!) Every city will have a different process when you change your last name, so visit your local registration office’s website or headquarters to find out what that process is.
11. Your Attorney
If you have a will or use other forms of legal services, don’t forget to give that office a call. If you’re local to your attorney, they may ask you to come in or for copies of your marriage certificate. But you might not need to meet with your attorney–the front desk may be able to handle all of the changes for you.
There’s a lot to do when you change your last name, and you just planned a wedding, so we know you can tackle anything! But just in case you’re not sure where to start, this list will cover most–if not all–of your name-changing checklist. Just don’t forget to update your address, too, if you’ve moved since your wedding!
Are you taking your partner’s last name or hyphenating? Maybe you’re creating a whole new last name for yourselves. Share your story with us below!