You are planning your wedding and you have decided to change your name to your husband’s, but have you planned what you need to do before and after the wedding regarding the needed documents to initiate the change? If you wish to change your name, you need to make changes promptly after the wedding.
Here is a checklist and to-do list of agencies and companies you may need to notify of your name change.
Before the Wedding
Tell your employer so that they can begin to make the necessary changes so that they will be in place when you return from your wedding. They may need to change your voice mail, your email, contact information on their website, and your business cards. They can also gather the paperwork you will need to complete after you say "I do".
When booking your honeymoon plans book using your Maiden name. You will not have the documentation in time with your new name on it, so you will need your tickets to match the documentation you do have.
After The Wedding
1) Social Security – the very first step is to obtain a new social security card. Once you get a copy of your marriage license take it along with the Social Security name change form and official copies of your current identification (social security card, driver’s license or passport). If you decided to get a bit creative with your last name, such as combining your two surnames, then you will also need copies of the official legal documentation and you both will need to obtain new social security cards.
2) Motor Vehicle Agency – You will then need to take your new social security card, official marriage license and your current driver’s license to the agency and fill out a change of name and vehicle registration. Many states may require another form of ID such as official birth certificate or US Passport. Check with your local Motor Vehicle Department for more information.
3) US Passport – If you have a current valid US passport, and it was issued within the past year you will need to fill out form DS-5504, if your passport is older than one year, then you will need to fill out form DS-82. Click here to read how to change your name on your US Passport (Link will go to the Official US Passport Page).
Although the above will change your name for US Government agencies, you may also want to change your name with the following organizations or companies:
• Your company’s Human Resources department. Make sure you change your W-4 to reflect your newly married status or they could be taking more taxes out than needed. Make sure they update your name as well, so that you can be credited with the proper social security benefits when you retire.
• US Postal Service, if you have a post office box or if you changed addresses.
• Utility Companies (phone, cable, gas, electric)
• Financial Organizations (Banks, credit cards, life & auto insurance, retirement plans, college loan repayments)
• Medial Organizations (medical insurance, dental insurance)
• Groups or Associations you are members of
• Voter Registration
If you need to obtain a birth certificate or copy of your marriage license you can apply online for a copy at www.vitalcheck.com
This article should not be taken as legal advice. Any questions you may have please consult with your own personal accountant or attorney.