How do I change my name with the Social Security Administration during COVID?! The government rules and regulations can be tough to navigate. We have been asked this question by many brides since COVID shut down in person visits to many government offices, including Social Security. After walking through this process with multiple couples, we have created a quick 3-step guide with useful links.
1. Mail your local county clerks office for certified copies of your marriage license. Here you can find the proper office to obtain the certified vital records necessary in your area.
We recommend you order several copies of your marriage license to keep in a safe place (like a fire proof, waterproof safe). You may need more copies of this document throughout your life so having several is a good idea.
Vital records offices often require you send payment via a cashiers check along with a self addressed stamped envelope for return documents. We like to send large envelopes so our documents come back without folds. Pro Tip: Include enough postage on the return envelope to account for all the copies of the marriage license you are requesting (If asking for 10 copies, weigh your envelope plus 10 sheets of paper. The post office can do this and tell you the postage needed, if you provide the item to be weighed).
2. Fill out this application from the Sociall Security Administration. As of December 14, 2020 the items you need:
An example of the documents you would need to change your name with Social Security are: A certified copy of your marriage license (not a photocopy), your current driver's license (yes the actual physical license - it should be mailed back to you. We would order an extra copy from our local BMV online before sending it off, just incase), and the completed application. Detailed information on what's required can be found on page on of the application
"To change the information on your Social Security number record (i.e., a name or citizenship change, or corrected date of birth) you must provide documents to prove your identity, support the requested change, and establish the reason for the change. For example, you may provide a birth certificate to show your correct date of birth. A document supporting a name change must be recent and identify you by both your old and new names. If the name change event occurred over two years ago or if the name change document does not have enough information to prove your identity, you must also provide documents to prove your identity in your prior name and/or in some cases your new legal name. If you were born outside the U.S. you must provide a document to prove your U.S. citizenship or current lawful, work-authorized status. See page 2 for an explanation of acceptable documents."
3. Send your application via certified mail or with tracking. Hold on to the tracking information until you receive your new social security card, so that you can follow up on the information with Social Security, if needed.
Rules and guidelines are ever changing so if you aren't sure, the best place to visit is your local and federal government websites for up to date information
You might also find this information useful on 21 places to change your last name after getting married. The first step is changing your name with Social Security, so start here, first.