Should you keep your last name after you get married?

Posted on Friday, May 16th, 2014 at 3:24 pm by Aaron

Rings, flowers, dress, music…one more question to consider as you plan your wedding: Should you keep your last name after you get married or change it? If you’re changing it, how do you do that the right way?

Should you keep your last name after you get married or change it? If you’re changing it, how do you do that the right way?


















There are many possibilities for your new name, including:

-        Keep your maiden name

-        Adopt your spouse's last name and use your maiden name as a middle name

-        Adopt two last names, perhaps with a hyphen

-        Combine your name with your spouse’s to create a new last name


The website can help. Through eight questions about your career, personal preferences and your state’s name-change laws, it helps you narrow your new surname options.


If you opt to change your last name, follow these steps to do it the right (legal) way. Tip: Follow them in order, since you need the items in #2 and #3 for #4.


1. First, don't change your name before your honeymoon. Your name must exactly match all travel documents (and passport name changes can take a few months).


2.  Get your marriage license. Make sure you have the original (or certified) marriage license with the raised seal and your new last name on it. If you didn’t get one, call your city clerk’s office and have them send you a copy. Make a few copies and put them in a secure spot.


3. Change your Social Security card. Go to the Social Security Administration's website and fill out the application. Your Social Security number stays the same; just your name changes. You should get your new card in a few weeks.


4. Change your driver’s license. Gather up your existing driver’s license, your certified marriage license, and your new Social Security card and go to your local Department of Motor Vehicles office to order a driver’s license with your new name on it. Don’t worry - you won’t need to take a test!


5. Change your bank accounts. Go to your bank branch location and bring with your new driver's license and your marriage license. Request new checks, debit and credit cards, too.


6. Other name changes – Use your new Social Security card and driver’s license to also update these accounts:

- Your company payroll and benefits

- Mortgage company or landlord

- Insurance companies

- Investment companies

- Credit card companies

- Utility companies

- Doctor’s offices

- Post office

- Voter registration office

- Schools and alumni associations

- Social media :) - and let the congratulations roll in!


Whatever your new name becomes, congratulations on your marriage from all of us at Wimmer’s Diamonds!