How to Change a Name on a Social Security Card After Getting Married

Change your name with the Social Security Administration before changing it anywhere else

By Pam Gaulin

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After marrying, a woman may decide to change her name. The name change is typically noted on the marriage license, as reflected by the name change selection you made when you applied for the license. The Social Security Administration needs your current and legal name in order to properly credit your Social Security account.

  • What You Need to Know
  • Before applying for a new Social Security card, a newlywed will need a copy of her marriage license, a government-issued photo identification, a black or blue pen and the application for a new Social Security card.
How to Change the Name on Your Card

Step 1:

Pick up an Application for a Social Security Card at a local Social Security Administration (SSA) office. This is the document you need to change any information on record with the Social Security Administration, including your name. Some cities require you to apply in person for the replacement card, according to the SSA. Check the requirements of your local office by calling 1-800-772-1213.

Step 2:

Print out a blank copy of the name change application if you would like to change your name via mail. The application may also be printed out, filled out in blue or black ink and and hand-delivered to the local SSA office.

Step 3:

Locate your certified marriage license or the certified court document from the local family court granting your name change. The SSA office needs to view the original forms, not copies, in order to update your name and issue a replacement card.

Step 4:

Find an identifying document which shows your former last name. The document should also include either a photo or date of birth. A driver's license, even an expired one, is acceptable proof of your former legal last name, according to the SSA. Other acceptable forms of identification include your US passport or an identification card issued by your home state.

Step 5:

Make copies of your all of your original documents, including the application, before mailing them or bringing them into the SSA office.

Step 6:

Change your name on your driver's license with your new Social Security Card as proof of your new name. Once you have changed your name on your social security card and driver's license, you should proceed with changing it elsewhere, including your cable, internet, cell phone, gas, oil, credit card and garbage collection bills.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • A marriage license must show the certification by the issuing agency or government office.
  • There is no fee to change your name with the Social Security Administration.
  • A name change on a marriage license does not automatically carry over from a Clerk of Courts or the motor vehicle office to to any other organization or agency including the SSA.
  • Never pay a fee to anyone claiming to handle name changes for the SSA.

About the Author

Pam Gaulin is a writer who specializes in the party planning and wedding industries.

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