Some people feel that one spouse assuming the other’s last name is an old-fashioned and outdated tradition. There are others that want to keep the tradition alive and change their names after saying, “I do.”
Once you make the decision to change your name legally, all your identification documents should match, including your US passport. There is a specific process for changing your name to your new married name.
We put together some tips to make the process even easier if you choose to take your spouse’s name. We have assisted newlyweds for over 20 years in our Houston office with getting their US passports re-issued with their new name, and we can help you.
Change your name soon after your marriage.
Many states have time limits for a name change, make sure you know the time allotted in your home state.
Getting a new social security card is simple. Just either take two forms of identification along with a certified copy of your marriage license to your local Social Security office. You can also do it by mail, but you’ll probably want to get a duplicate copy of your marriage license to mail in.
Changing your driver’s license is easy to accomplish. Just make an appearance at your local Department of Motor Vehicles with your certified copy of your marriage license. You will be able to get a new, updated license with your new name on it the same day in most locales.
Now, let’s talk passport. If you need to change your name, you’re going to need to reapply for your passport. Remember, your travel documents must match your identification or it will put the brakes on your travel. The TSA will not accept a marriage certificate as proof of a name change.
Normal turnaround time can be four to six weeks, however, you can obtain your passport in far less time, 24-hours if necessary.
Here are the documents you need to get started:
- One completed application for US passport renewal
- Two passport photographs
- Authorization for Texas Tower to act on your behalf
- Your current US passport (this will be returned)
- Flight itinerary or rush request
- Original or certified copy of your marriage certificate
Once you get those documents together – we can do the rest for you!
Another sometimes overlooked area is something you’re probably in at least once a day. You’ll need to update your name will be your email. This can usually be accomplished in a short and sweet email to everyone on your contact list about your status change.
Update your bank in person, as each financial institution has their own set of guidelines, ask what they need from you to verify the name change ahead of your appointment. Most major credit cards will have a form to fill out and send in with copies of your proof of name change. Memberships and loyalty programs are other good accounts to remember to update. They usually have basically the same requirements as updating your credit cards.
Those are just the basics for getting your name changed! If you’re a newly wedded, congrats! If you have any questions about your passport and visa for your honeymoon travel, just contact us!