Post # 1
This is going to be a little confusing. So I got courthouse married 2 years ago for education/tax reasons only. Because of that, my “husband” and I kept my maiden name original, and we continued on like nothing happened. So I signed the original paperwork with my maiden name.
Now that he has actually proposed, and we’re looking to change my surname to his do I need to renew my wedding license? Most of the government websites say that they need a wedding license with my new name on it to accept it for changing my SSN, drivers license, etc. If I do renew my wedding license, what are the proper steps to do it? Just a little confused (partially because we made it confusing, but oh well).
Post # 2
It depends on the marriage license – some licenses have a place for you to write your new married name, ours didn’t. The marriage certificate is what should be used to change your name anyway, and the only things written on ours were my maiden name and DH’s name. I took the marriage certificate to the SS office and changed my name without a problem, and then used my new SS card at the DMV to update my driver’s license. I also used the marriage certificate to update my passport without any problems. And for most day to day things, you’re good to go once you have your new driver’s license in hand.
Post # 3
I’ve never heard of a marriage license that expires, so there isn’t anything to renew. Since you decided at the time to keep your name, then you’re going to need to do a legal name change to change it, because you’re often only given a finite amount of time to change your name.
Oh, and your husband can’t propose to someone who is already married. That’s not your fiance, that’s your husband and I hope you aren’t misleading people to believe that you’re not already married.
Post # 4
When I got my marriage certificate, I signed with my maiden name. There was a second piece of paper they gave me to fill out and send in to change my name (which I promptly threw away 😛 )
You’ll probably need to verify as it varies from place to place but plenty of women wait to change their name. Go in and ask which steps you have to take.
I’m also confused about how you can be proposed to when you’re already married but that’s a topic or a different thread.
Post # 5
my understanding is that you have to do a regular legal name change through the the probate court at this point. It’s completely separate from the marriage license. I was warned that even with the new name on my marriage certificate that I had 2 years to do the name change or else the social security office would require a court order (not sure if that’s true or not, but I didn’t risk it) as if it were a non-marriage name change.
Post # 6
You need to do a regular name change, I think. It won’t have anything to do with the license. You get a form, fill it out, and I believe take it to the courthouse.
Then you can update your marriage license and SS with new name. 🙂
Post # 7
Laws, time limits, etc for stuff like this can vary from state to state. I think everyone here has given very good advice, but you won’t really know until you talk to someone in your county/district office. Unfortunately, in my state (Georgia) it’s almost impossible to get anyone at the probate court office on the phone. If you can’t get anyone on the phone then I would just make some time to go by and find out what the time limitations are on being able to change your name with your original marriage license. As others have said, your original license should have your maiden name on it because it’s a legal document and you are signing it with your current legal name (maiden name). Most states allow you to use that to change your name to your spouse’s last name without a problem, though they may have time limits on how far after the marriage date you can do this. I would check with your local court though because, again, the laws vary from state to state. As others have said, you can do a regular legal name change if your time limit has run out – as I understand it, it’s not that difficult, it just may cost you some money (I’m sure the amount varies by state). Good luck!
Post # 8
In our state I had so much time after the wedding to change my name. I just had to take the necessary documents to the DMV for a new license and to the Social Security office for a new card. It wasn’t complicated at all.
Post # 9
Even though I changed my name when I got married (in Georgia), my actual marriage license doesn’t show my new name. It has my original maiden name and everything. The social security office was the first place I went afterwards because then I had my little card to show the DMV and everyone else with the proper spelling of the new name. The only issue I see is that some places say you have to change your name within a certain period of time after receiving the marriage license…you’ll have to check with the DMV in your state, but ours had an article on their website about it. But if you’ve passed that date, you can def do just a regular legal name change – it just takes a little longer and costs a little more $$.
Post # 10
A few years ago I needed to change my last name due to work reasons (ID & SS card needed to match). All I had to do was take my marriage cert to the SS office, along w/ my drivers license. I filled out a form, met w/ a clerk, and it was done. I had a new SS card (w/ new last name) in something like a week. (I may have needed to take my old SS card, birth cert too, don’t recall).
Post # 11
Enjoy this time in your life 🙂 This bee is VERY happy for you…. Yes, in my state you would need a court order since you did not change it on the marriage license, then process that with SSA/DMV etc within 12 months. YMMV in your state.
Post # 12
I have to agree with PPs. There is no need to “renew” a wedding license; it is valid already, in the original names you used. You will need to go through a legal name change, which is a bit more involved than signing a piece of paper with your new name. Your name change has nothing to do with marriage, since you are already married. It may not have felt “real” to you, but it was real to the state, and thus you are already as married as you will ever be, whether your heart was in it or not.