Thursday, November 04, 2010

Name change, it can't be that easy. Can it?

•All marriage license documents are signed with one's current legal name, never the intended new name.

•There is no legal requirement for name change after getting married; it is a right a couple may choose to exercise.

•Traditionally, the bride has taken the groom's last name. If you are intending anything other than the traditional name change, check with each agency for its requirements to accomplish that. If an agency requires more than a certified copy of your marriage license, see King County District Court, for details on a court-ordered name change.

•Washington State law does not impose a time limit after the wedding by which a name change must be accomplished. However, if you are making the change more than a year after your wedding, check with each agency to determine if a certified copy of your marriage license will suffice to change your name with them.

•To assume the new last name, you should first obtain certified copies of the marriage certificate. Then work with each agency to change its record of your name. These may include:

•State Driver's License/Identification Card:

•Social Security: or 1-800-772-1213

•Immigration Services: or (206) 553-5956.

•Passport: or 1-877-487-2778.

•Banks, Insurance, Employer, Military, Voter Registration

•Some agencies may accept the red and gold commemorative marriage certificate you receive after the wedding; however, you should expect most agencies to require a certified copy of your marriage record.

I've been married for 8 years and am finally starting to think it is high time my last name was like my kids. In my search for how to do it the above is what I found. Is it really that easy? I just decide that I have a new last name and change my licence? Isn't it harder then that? I already have a certified copy of my marriage certificate (which whom ever was doing it made it so my husband and I were married a month earlier then we actually were).


Sonja said...

The most painful part is changing it through all the agencies. And I remember is being a pretty precise order. Something like you couldn't change your driver's license until you had your marriage certificate, your ss # until you had DL, your passport before you had ss AND DL...or something like that. It just takes a long time. Then you have to change it for banks, 401ks, wills, health insurance policies, etc. For some of those a copy of your marriage license will suffice, for some you need ML plus photo ID. Some agencies also require original (embossed and stamped) copies of your ML so it's usually a good idea to order a few extras since they're pretty cheap. Good luck. If you're planning on staying in the country for a good amount of time then you shouldn't have any problem, time-wise.

bre said...

Well, you're a woman so yes, I think it really is that easy :) When my husband took my last name 6 years ago, he had to go through a considerable amount more, including swearing in front of a judge that he was not changing his name to get out of various terrible crimes. It's a pretty wacky system.

Luna Indigo said...

I accept that it will be a lot of paper work. That makes complete sense. Does this mean I can change any part of my name? I saw a link that said it might be harder for a hyphenation, which is what I'm doing.

Now I understand why men have to go to court or women for that matter. I was curious why a judge had to be involved. Yes, a very funny system we have indeed!