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Cost (and hassles!) to change my name

June 7, 2010

Changing my name hasn’t been very expensive.  A marriage certificate was something we’d need regardless, so the $90 we paid for that really shouldn’t be counted towards it.  Many people get extra copies — so far we haven’t.  My name was legally changed at the moment of our marriage, but we didn’t have any proof until we got the certificate back.  This took a few weeks.

The first step (after Facebook!) was the Social Security Administration.  Free and relatively quick. From there I could change my name at work.

Next was the DMV, which is the only place that has cost any money:  $25.  I was excited because I got a new picture (my last photo was fine, but my red shirt seriously clashed with Cali’s drivers license color scheme), but it cost me a good two hours of my life.  My plan was to get there before it opened, but things didn’t quite work out that way, so I had to wait.  This was the worst part of it.

I also needed a new passport, but since I renewed mine less than a year ago, it is free.  (I checked into this before renewing it, of course!)  I had leftover photos from when I got them last summer, so I just sent in the rest.  I also had to send in our only copy of the license, but they’ll send it back.  In the mean time, I have color photocopies at home.

Now that my new license arrived, the last step is changing all my credit card and banking accounts and anything else with my name on it (insurance, bills, etc.).  So far this has been pretty easy, but it’s just a long list to tackle!

In summary, changing my name was pretty cheap, but it still is weird to transition.  For awhile, I hesitated using my married name because I had no identification!   Now I still hesitate because it feels weird, but I’m getting used to it.  Just please don’t call me Mrs. T Lastname.  That makes my skin crawl!

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. June 7, 2010 5:33 am

    I am finally getting used to signing my new last name, only took me 2 months. 🙂 I still say my old last name when people ask for my name though… it just been ingrained in 25 years of habit and hard to break.

    I also HATE Mrs. Ryan Lastname! Ugh, I feel like I’ve been absorbed into him and no longer my own personality. Mrs. Leslie Lastname is fine, but I have my own first name thanks.

    And I totally forgot to change my passport…thanks for the reminder. 🙂

    • June 7, 2010 6:26 pm

      Glad to help! If it is older than 1 year, you will have to pay full price (i think) for a new one.

      It is a hard habit to break, but I think I’ll get used to it. Maybe. Someday. 🙂

  2. June 7, 2010 6:40 am

    Glad to hear this went well for you–I’m hoping it goes as smoothly for me. Did you practice writing your new name for a while before you needed it? I feel like I’m going to need to do so–but I haven’t done that since high school!

    • June 7, 2010 6:25 pm

      I “practiced” once or twice, but my handwriting generally is awful and my old signature was nothing beautiful, so my new one is equally unimpressive 🙂 Oh well, they still let me sign for things!

  3. June 7, 2010 11:18 am

    Glad to hear that it was easy for you! 3 years later, and I think I still have some stuff in my maiden name. I guess I’m just not ready to give up a name I had for most of my life. 🙂

  4. Angela permalink
    June 7, 2010 4:47 pm

    I got married recently and had the same amount of luck as you with getting everything updated quickly and without any issues. I was actually surprised everything went so quickly, from what i saw online it seemed like it was going to take forever. Glad you have had a similar experience!

  5. June 7, 2010 5:15 pm

    What was annoying for me was that some places don’t just let you change your name online – you have to send in a form. ING is an online bank, and I have to mail them a form! Anyway, I have filled out the forms and they have been sitting on my kitchen table for several months now, waiting for me to find a stamp (and a post office…).

    The most amusing change sequence is the ones at work. None of the computer systems talk to each other, so if you look me up it the white pages, I’m under my new last name, but if you want to email me, you have to look under my old name. And in another email system (because we have 4, wheee!), if I email someone, it shows up as NewLastName, but if they want to email me back, they have to send it to my old last name.

    You wouldn’t think people got married and changed their name ALL THE TIME or anything.

    • June 7, 2010 6:24 pm

      Yeah, I suppose I’ll be out a few more stamps by the time I’m done. I have only started my list of financial/bills that need to be changed!

      Work didn’t seem too be too complicated, I only have TWO email systems. One thing I tested (after reading this) is that if you search for my old last name, you can’t find me. You’d think I could list an “alternate” name or something.

  6. June 9, 2010 8:18 pm

    You know, I don’t think I will change my name on Facebook. Or Twitter. You just hear about identity theft from social networking sites too often! Plus, sites like Spokeo pull their information from social networking sites. I figure if I never list my married name anywhere online, they won’t be putting that info out there for everyone else to see. (I’m being a bit paranoid, I know.)

    It’s good to hear that it was a mostly seamless process for you. I’m dreading the process myself.

    • June 9, 2010 8:26 pm

      I only use FB, but Spokeo didn’t pull anything from mine. I have my privacy settings pretty high (though it is a constant monitoring process to make sure they stay how I want them).

      But you make a good point about ID theft!

  7. October 13, 2016 7:09 pm

    Ugh the Mrs. HisFirst HisLast bugs me so much! Especially because I don’t even plan on changing my name… (Neither of us do.)

    • October 14, 2016 8:08 am

      It still upsets me, and most (grandma, great-aunts and perhaps even his parents) in his family still address mail this way. I told him to discretely throw away the envelope if he noticed it before I did!

      • October 17, 2016 10:41 am

        I’m glad your husband is supportive in how his family calls you!

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