How do I change my name after I’m married?

Hello! I’m picking up all sorts of useful bits of information in the final month of my wedding planning adventure! One of the big things I was concerned about was changing my name. I’m not going to get into the merits of change vs keep (I think that’s such a personal decision) but if you do chose to change your name, here’s how it’s done (overseas readers, this is according to the law of England and Wales so please check if you live abroad what the rules are in your respective countries):

Getting married means you can automatically use your new name

Your registry office should send you a form to fill out before your wedding. This will ask you if you’re keeping or changing your name. Then once you’re married you can start using your married name immediately. You don’t need to change it by deed poll or anything else.

You do, however, need to present your marriage certificate to the following people to change it officially:

Your employer
Inland Revenue
Passport office (can be done in advance if you’re going on honeymoon straight after your wedding – see next section)
Building society, finance / loan companies, insurance companies, credit cards / pensions / Premium Bond office etc.
Doctor & dentist
Utility companies
TV licensing office
Child Benefit Agency
Local  authority
Professional Organisation, clubs societies and associations
School / college / university or library
Facebook (just kidding!)

The registry office have kindly sent through a mock letter of notification for those who wish to change their names:

Your address here

Reference number                                                                                                                                                                                                           Date

Dear Sir / Madam,

Re: change of name following marriage

This is  to notify you that as from (insert date of marriage) I no longer use the name of (insert former name in full) and would ask you to use (insert married name in full).

A (certified) copy of the marriage certificate is attached and I would request that you return this document to me as soon as possible in the enclosed SAE.

Then sign the letter using your married name and pop it in the post! Simples!

If you’re going on honeymoon, change it in advance

Unless you’ve booked in your maiden name and are happy to go on honeymoon as that, you’ll need to order a new passport if you plan to leave immediately. This can be done with a PD2 form which you can get from that your registrars will need to sign off on.

I hope this little piece of info helps! Let me know if there are any wedding “rules” you’re unsure about and I’d be happy to do a write up!

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