How to: Change Your Name After your Wedding
Your wedding day, the planning, finding the right venue and the right wedding package is all part of a new life that you are planning. Afte the big day, there are still things to consider, the biggest of which is changing names. For all couples who choose to wed, this can be a thorny issue. Here is our guide to changing your name and how to go about it.
There are several options for changing your name to become the couple you want to portray.
Changing to your partner’s name
In the past it has been usual for a bride to take the groom’s name once married. Recently this has extended to husbands taking a wife’s name to continue a family name, and also same sex couples choosing one partner’s name to keep. We recommend having a discussion with your partner before the big day to ensure your name expectations are the same for after marriage. But if you do decide to take your partner’s name, you do not need to change your name with deedpoll. Just get in touch with the relevant authorities (see our list) and supply your marriage certificate and it is done.
This can be a slightly more complex decision if both partners decide to change their name. If one partner wants to double-barrel their surname, they will often just need to inform relevant bodies by sending the marriage certificate and state your new chosen surname. Be sure to include which order you want the names in and whether it is hyphenated or not.
However, if the name change is not straightforward (e.g. both partners wish to change name), you may need to change your name by deed poll. If you do need to do this, then it’s recommended that one partner change their name before the wedding then the other partner can simply use the marriage certificate to update their details as a simple name change as it will be a straightforward name change to partner’s name. If this is your choice, be sure to leave enough time for the process and to order new passports if you are booking a foreign honeymoon.
This has become a choice recently with several celebrities changing names such as when Chris O’Dowd married Dawn Porter and she became Dawn O’Porter. Following this option does require a Deed Poll change, but again if one changes first, this can then be a straightforward change for the second partner.
How to change your name
If you are keeping your own surname, there is nothing further you need to do after marriage.
As mentioned earlier, if you are taking your partner’s name, you do not need to change your name by deedpoll, only contact the relevant authorities with your marriage certificate. Here is a list of places you will need to contact to let them know of the change in circumstances. Many of these places have online details about how to change a name, so it is worth exploring the online options first.
- The passport office
- The DVLA (driving licence, vehicle registration)
- HM Revenue and Customs
- Child Benefit
- Local Authority (Council tax and electoral register)
- Land Registry
- Student Loans
- Your employer
- Your bank or building society
- Your mortgage provider
- Your pension providers
- Credit card companies
- Your phone & broadband provider
- Your doctor
- Your dentist
- Your vet
- Your gym
- Your motoring organisations (breakdown cover)
- Utility companies (gas, water, electricity providers)
- Your insurance company (motor, home, travel, pet)
- Loans companies
- Magazine subscriptions
- Store cards & online accounts
- Any clubs or societies you are a member
This isn’t an exhaustive list, but covers most of the major identifications. The first one you might wish to change is your passport, to travel with your new name on honeymoon. You can apply for a new passport up to 3 month before the wedding and have it “post-dated” to the date of your wedding. However some countries do not accept post-dated passports on visa applications, so if you need a visa to travel on honeymoon, this might be something to check out.
These days there is no right or wrong when it comes to choosing names. As long as you and your partner are in agreement about what to do, as in booking your venue, picking your wedding package, its just another step in your marriage journey.
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