Where should I change my name?
Now that you are married, you may be thinking about a name change. First, decide if you will take your spouse’s name or if you want to hyphenate your last names. Then obtain an official copy of your marriage certificate. Finally, contact the appropriate institutions from the list below.
On your wedding day, the minister or officiant may have presented you with a marriage certificate. In fact, this certificate is probably a ‘commemorative certificate’ and is not a legal document. Generally speaking, the official marriage certificate is available after your marriage is recorded and can be obtained from the state where the marriage took place.
While some entities may accept a copy of the marriage certificate others may require an original certificate.
This is a list of agencies to consider for your name change:
- Social Security Administration
- Department of Motor Vehicles
- Passport Office
- Registrar of Voters
- Veterans Administration
- Post office (via change of address form)
- Banks and other financial institutions
- Credit card companies
- Investment accounts
- Insurance agencies (including auto, home, and health)
- Landlord or mortgage company
- Telephone and utility companies
- Doctor’s offices
Some institutions may either accept a copy of your marriage certificate or will make a copy if you present the original. Others may require an original copy so know how many copies you will need before you order your official certificate.