Legally changing your name may sound like a snore, but if you do it in the first few months of marriage, it'll make life a lot easier.
Click here to download the PDF file For Starters
To start, take a look at this name changing kit
. You can also check with your county clerk to find out name-change guidelines before the wedding. Some places require you to list your new name (maiden, hyphen, or hybrid) when you apply for your marriage license, and others allow you to submit a change with the Social Security office or DMV after you’re married.
Also make sure that your wedding officiant mails in your signed marriage license ASAP so you receive your marriage certificate. You’ll need this certificate (or in some cases, a copy of it) to apply for a name change.
For Your Wallet
- Change your bank account and order new checks. (Download our Merge Your Money Checklist for more great tips on how to meld your accounts.)
- Change your credit cards (even ones from retail stores).
- Update any stocks, IRAs, mortgages, leases, or money market accounts.
- Order an annual credit report to make sure all old accounts are closed -- and that no one is opening accounts using your maiden name. Go to AnnualCreditReport.com.
For "The Man"
- Get a new Social Security card (you’ll need your marriage certificate). Go to SocialSecurity.gov.
- Get a new driver’s license (you’ll need to bring your new SS card and marriage certificate).
- Mail in your passport (with a new photo) for an updated one. Go to Travel.State.gov/passport.
- Alert voter registration at DeclareYourself.org. Click “Register to Vote” and then check the box that says you're changing your name.
For Work & Home
- Change HR paperwork at your office, get a new email address, and alert your contacts of the change.
- Update insurance cards and policies -- download our Insurance Inventory Checklist.
- Change your name on utility bills, like cable, gas, and your cell phone.
- Contact alumni associations, gyms, and other organizations you belong to.
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