Post # 1
In investigating this for myself I have found the document published by the Social Security Administration as to what constitutes an acceptable name change upon marriage. I am not trying to counter experience of married Bees who have done something different – just presenting what the official position is. It’s explained pretty well actually.
D. Example of acceptable evidence to process a name change based on marriage
Lisa Foster submits evidence of the name change event, her US ceremonial marriage to Bryan Lee-Walsh. She wants to change her surname to a compound surname, Foster Lee, with only part of Bryan’s surname. Since this new name can be derived from the prior names shown on the marriage document, the marriage document is acceptable evidence of the new name. We may also change Lisa’s surname to one of the following if she requests it:
LEE-WALSH (or reverse, with or without space or hyphen),
LEE FOSTER (with or without space or hyphen, Foster Lee could also have a hyphen or not have a space)
FOSTER WALSH (or reverse, with or without space or hyphen)
FOSTER LEE WALSH (in any order, with or without spaces or hyphens)
The marriage document can also be used as acceptable evidence of identity, if it shows Lisa’s prior name (Lisa Foster) and either her age, birth date, or parents’ names, that matches the data on the Numident, and if the marriage took place within the prior two years.
Post # 3
Oh also – there are state laws included at this link: https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/1502712000
Unfortunately it is not all states, just the ones that have specific laws/rules around name changes.
Post # 4
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
An employee at the lovely SSA office that I went to gave me lecture about why you cannot retain your maiden name if you choose to take your FI’s name. It was BS because I know many other brides who have made that choice and now have their maiden name as thri middle name. This time I am asking for his manager and/or going to another SSA office if they give me a hard time.
Anybody else have this issue at the SSA office?
Post # 5
@beachbride1216: I’m not 100% sure but based on the documentation it seems from SSA’s perspective you can only change your last name, not middle name, upon marriage. But your state really matters the most. In my state (NJ) any change to first or middle name requires a formal name change in court – marriage is not sufficient.
My parents are immigrants so I have no idea but I do wonder if many of the women in older generations who did First Maiden Married actually did it legally. I mean, if you look at their SS card I wonder if that’s what it says, or if it was just done out of convention.
Post # 6
Geez. I had such an easy time at the SSA office. Good luck ladies!
Post # 7
Gah…I had such a difficult time at the SSA office. I waited there for 2 hours for them to tell me that my marriage certificate wasn’t enough…I had to go to the DMV first. DMV was fantastic…frickin SSA was horrible! This of course was 5 years ago…so hopefully they’ve gotten better!
Post # 8
@2PeasinaPod: In Philly?!? I’m in Montgomery County and Norrisown SSA was my first stop and they didn’t need anything to have been changed at DMV. I think the SSA you went to wasn’t following the right procedure…or maybe they fixed it in the past 5 years.
Post # 9
I was in California but I changed my name to two middle names. From First Middle Maiden to First Middle Maidenn Last. They gave me zero problems. I hope you ladies get it figured out!!
Post # 10
In California, S. Cali to be exact, was told that I had to go to SSA office first then DMV, once name is changed at SSA office it takes 24 hrs to update at the DMV…. went to SSA office on my appt day and time, had no problems…the lady that helped me was sweet, she didn’t even ask me for my ID, changed my name and then off I went in and out in 30 mins…DMV after was fine too, 20 mins there too also with appt.