Mar 13, 2008

Simple Checklist to Change Your Name

If you're changing your name, you probably can't wait to be "Mrs. Smith!" You can proudly introduce yourself as such as soon as you are married, but it'll take a little time and paperwork to have your new name be on record everywhere it needs to be.

Here's a list of people/institutions you're going to want to notify as soon as possible:

Social Security- Getting a new social security card will facilitate many of the other changes you need to make. There's a form to fill out, bring that and your marriage license to your local social security office to file.

Department of Motor Vehicles

Voter Registration


Passport Office Unfortunately you won't have a passport issued in your new name in time for your honeymoon, so make reservations in your maiden name. This goes for domestic travel too, as you need positive identification for most means of transportation

Post Office

Any banks where you have an account
. Make sure to order new checks with your married name on them.

Your Mortgage company

Credit Card companies

Any investments
you have in your name

Insurance companies.
Car, home, life, and health insurance will all need to be notified.

All of your doctors

Utility companies

Your employer

Your school
, if applicable

Any legal documents (such as a will or health care proxy)
or proceedings you are involved with.

Other people to notify: Your gym, any club or museum memberships you have, your library, your frequent flier program, Netflix and similar services, and of course, all your friends and family.

Many places where you will be registering your name change have official forms you have to fill out that are specific to the organization. But it is a good idea to write up a letter you can send out saying "I am writing to inform you of a legal change in my name, and request that all future records indicate my name as Jane Smith. My former name is Miss Jane Jones, as of June 20, 2008 I am Jane Smith." Include any pertinent contact information, especially if that is changing as well. The letter doesn't have to be elaborate, but something that spells out your former and current names and is presenting your request for a change in writing.

Tip: Carry extra ID with you for a while, with both names on it, until you are officially "Mrs. Smith" everywhere you need to be.


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