Majority of people think that one of the spouse’s is legally required to change their last name for matching that of their spouse following their marriage. This is not the case anymore. Everyone is free to keep their name, hyphenate with a spouse’s name, take the name of their spouse, or use an altogether different name.
You can do the following after legally changing your name following marriage:
- Changing the name to the last name of your spouse
- Changing the name to something that is not your spouse’s last name
- Informing people about the change
Attorneys at SBEMP (Slovak, Baron, Empey, Murphy & Pinkney) law firm provides professional legal advice and services to clients in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Inland Empire, Orange County, Coachella Valley, Costa Mesa, San Diego, New Jersey, New York, and surrounding locations.
Process to Legally Change Your Name Following Marriage
These are a few first steps you need to take for changing the name legally after getting married:
- Using the new name on the marriage certificate.
- Changing identification documents, such as state-issued ID, driver’s license, and Social Security Card for reflecting the new name.
You would need to present the marriage certificate for changing your name on identification documents. You always have the freedom to revert to your old name after divorce in the unfortunate event that the marriage doesn’t work out.
Using the Last Name of Your Spouse
It is easy to change your name to your spouse’s name after getting married. You should follow the above-mentioned steps and then:
- Start using the changed name
- Use your changed name in family and social settings
- Use the new name when you apprise people of address change
- Use the new name while opening memberships and accounts
Not Using the Last Name of Your Spouse
It is completely acceptable to change your name after getting married to something other than the last name of your spouse. However, you may need more than a marriage license to complete the process. In most cases, you would also require a court order. Every state has different regulations about their requirements. You should check the laws of your own state on the topic.
Majority of states require filing of certain forms in court. You can find these forms online on state government websites. However, you should understand that a formal advertisement is required in certain states for using the new name. This can be done by posting a simple notice in the local papers.
Let People Know
The best way of informing people about your name change is to start using the new name. It is easy to tell family, friends, and coworkers that you changed your name. However, you would need to follow a more formal process for letting financial institutions and government agencies know your new name. You would need to support the request with a court order or copy of your marriage license.
You don’t officially need to change your name for updating it in email signatures and social media after getting married. Lawyers at the SBEMP law firm serve clients from Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Rancho Mirage, Inland Empire, Orange County, Coachella Valley, Costa Mesa, San Diego, New Jersey, New York, and nearby locations for a range of legal practice areas.
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SBEMP LLP is a full service law firm with attorney offices in Palm Springs (Palm Desert, Inland Empire, Rancho Mirage, Indian Wells), CA; Indian Wells, CA; Costa Mesa (Orange County), CA; San Diego, CA; New Jersey, NJ; and New York, NY.
DISCLAIMER: This blog post does not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by reading it. This blog post may be considered ATTORNEY ADVERTISING in some states. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained within this blog post. Before acting or relying upon any information within this newsletter, seek the advice of an attorney.