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Checklist: Where to Change Your Name

Date posted: 07/18/2012

by Melissa Crumish on
in Address & Name Change

1854 Checklist: Where to Change Your NameThis may be difficult to fathom, but name change notification does not stop at Facebook or Twitter. There are other authorities to notify should your name change due to:

  • Marriage
  • Divorce
  • Court order
  • Certificate of Naturalization showing new name

Who to Notify of Your Name Change

To begin, focus on updating your identification by notifying:

  • The Social Security Administration. Your Social Security card is your most important form of identification. Update this first before notifying other agencies, as some may require a Social Security card showing your new name.
  • Your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office. Most DMVs require name change notification within a specified number of days. It’s especially important to update your drivers license and identification card since both can be used for boarding at airports, cashing checks, and registering to vote.
  • Your county voter registration department.
  • Your State Department for the purpose of updating passport information.

After updating your identification, you’ll next want to notify in no particular order:

  • Your insurance companies (car, health, home, rent, life).
  • All employers. This sounds obvious, but it’s needed for new business cards, payroll and withholding tax forms.
  • All schools, if applicable.
  • Your doctor, dentist, optician, veterinarian, and pharmacist.
  • Your bank or credit union and all other financial institutions.
  • Your post office.
  • All utility companies (electric, phone, cable, gas).
  • Magazine and newspaper circulation departments.
  • State and federal tax departments.
  • Your landlord or mortgage company.
  • Credit card companies.
  • Government assistance programs, if applicable.
  • Veteran Affairs Department, if applicable.
  • Your county tax assessor.
  • Your library.

Other Documents to Update

Though not required, to avoid possible confusion in the future, also consider updating:

  • Car title
  • Will
  • Power of Attorney
  • Health care directive
  • Living trusts

Have we left anything out about changing your name? Share your smarts with our online community by leaving a comment below.

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