- Take his last name
- Hyphenate names
- Keep your last name
I chose none of those options. I’m officially Jamie Smith Dorobek, 2 last names, no hyphen. I plan on only using Dorobek for the day to day. I’m here to tell you there are lots of ways to do the last name thing.
How to Change Your Last Name (and should you?)
Things I considered when deciding on a new last name
- I own a house in my maiden name, and I wanted that to be a part of my official name. With the hopes of avoiding any confusion.
- I worked at a 70% Hispanic high school where most last names were hyphenated. It often led to teacher confusion, and I decided I did not want this for my kids.
- I wanted our family to have one family name. Traveling abroad with a child, without your surname, means more paperwork. See more info here.
- Jamie Smith is super simple and easy to say and you rarely have to spell it out.
- Jamie Smith is super common. 13 Jamie Smith’s in Anthropolgie’s computer in Austin, TX alone.
- I wanted a simple personal email address. My previous email included numbers and an underscore.
- Andy wanted me to take his last name.
Here are the steps for changing anything about your name
- First, you need to change your name on your social security card.
- Wait until you receive your marriage license in the mail. For me, this took one month from the wedding date.
- Fill out the Social Security 5 form. Download and fill out the SS-5 form here. Your new card will be free.
- Bring this form and your original or certified copy of your marriage license to your local social security office. You can also mail in the forms. Find your local office here with your zip code.
- I received my new card about 3 weeks later.
Other documents that need to be updated with your new last name
- Driver’s License
- Bank Accounts
- Credit Cards
- Employer- 401K, insurance
- Investment accounts
- Car insurance (You can’t do this until you have a DL with your new last name.)
- Airline Mileage Accounts- I had no idea what a pain in the butt this was going to be. And no one ever said I needed to do it, but you kind of have to. Obviously you don’t want to make brand hew accounts with your new name because then you would loose all of your previous miles. Here’s the low down on how to change your name with the individual airlines:
More tips on changing your last name
- I blacked out our SSN’s on the marriage license to send to the airlines. They don’t need that info, and I didn’t feel comfortable with it floating around cyber space.
- Don’t forget to make each other the beneficiaries on all accounts
- Get 2 marriage licenses, it’s just handy to have an extra. You have to send one to the passport people.
There you have it, all you ever needed to know about changing your last name. Whahoo! It’s a lot of work. I still need to change my DL and work on a few airlines. Where are you in the name changing process? Or did you decide that name changing is not for you?