Many state and U.S. government offices require a certified marriage certificate to be provided as proof of marriage before they will legally change a person’s name. Examples of the offices needing certified marriage certificates include: all state DMVs, the Social Security Administration, and the State Department (to issue a name change on a U.S. passport). In addition to government offices many banks and creditors must be sent a certified marriage certificate to allow their customers to change their names on accounts.
Name Change Advice
Looking for name change advice or some tips for newlywed life? The MissNowMrs experts have created state-specific name change articles and checklists for you. We’ve chronicled our recommendations for how to travel while changing your name AND how to handle voting during the transition.
We’ve also compiled our best guidance for how to handle difficult sister in laws, holidays as newlyweds, the ever-annoying baby questions, and much more. Why? Because, while we are name change experts, we’re also newlywed wives, moms, and sisters.
We hope our name change advice articles help smooth your transition to your new name, and a whole new phase of life. Congratulations and best wishes from the entire MissNowMrs team!
How do I know if I have a Certified Marriage Certificate?
Certified marriage certificates will have a raised state and/or county seal on them. The seal ensures that the certificate is a legitimate copy of the original marriage certificate. If your document does not have a seal, it will not be accepted as a certified copy.
How to Change Your Name Post-Wedding Continued
Curious how to change your name post-wedding? The MissNowMrs name change experts are continuing their list of newlywed to-do’s.
- Update your U.S. Passport. You will need to fill out an application for a name change on your passport and have new photos taken. The fee will depend on how long you have had your current passport.
- Notify the Post Office. If you have moved due to your recent marriage make sure to notify the United States Postal Office of your new residence by filling out a brief form.
- Name Change the Easy Way. Use MissNowMrs.com to complete all of your state and U.S. government forms in three easy steps: Questions, Forms, File.
- Change your personal paperwork. This includes notifying your bank, credit cards, utilities, title and registration of your vehicle(s), all types of insurance (health, life, auto, home, ect.), professional certifications, voter registration, memberships, ect.
- Start using your new name. Introduce yourself with your new name, change your name on your voice mail and answering machine, sign your new name on emails or letters, and consider buying yourself something with your new initials on it: jewelry, stationary, or clothing are great examples.
How to Change Your Name Post-Wedding
Here’s how to change your name post wedding:
- Get a few copies of your certified marriage certificate. You will need to use them as legal proof of your marriage.
- Get a Social Security Card with your new name. You will need to complete an application and submit it with proof of identity and proof of legal name change.
- Update your driver’s license or ID from your state DMV. Each state has a process for name change on a driver’s license or ID card. Make sure to bring your current license/ID, proof of legal name change, and proof of residence if you have moved. It is also a good idea to wear something cute, since your photo will be re-taken.
- Notify the IRS of your name change. You will need to complete a form to notify the IRS. This ensures that when you file your taxes under your new name or jointly with your husband the IRS will not hold your returns while they investigate who you are (ex: We have Caroline Green on file, but not a Caroline Smith with this SSN).
How to Change Your Name Pre-Wedding
Curious how to change your name pre-wedding? It’s not an uncommon question! So, follow our tips below!
- Take some time to consider what name-change avenue you will be taking and discuss it with your future mate.
- Tell your family and wedding attendants of your planned name change. They will then be able to advise anyone asking monogramming or gift-personalization questions before the wedding.
- **Please make your honeymoon travel plans and reservations using your maiden name. You will not have time to change your driver’s license and passport prior to your trip.**
- Inform your employer of your intended name change so they can begin the process of changing your email, business cards, and any other items bearing your maiden name.
- Consider using an app or service such as www.missnowmrs.com to help you prepare for your name change.
Did you decide to change your name pre-wedding? If so, we’d love to hear about your experience in a comment!