Free New York Name Change Guide & Checklist

How do I change names after marriage in New York?
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New York married name change
Get your New York marriage license
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Get your marriage license
Get a certified copy of your marriage certificate
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Get your marriage certificate
Prioritize your name change with the SSA
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SSA name change
New York Driver’s License, Permit & ID card name change
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DMV and ID card name changes
New York vehicle title & registration name change
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Vehicle title & registration
Passport name change
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Passport name change
Document preparation
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Document preparation
DIY with our free checklist
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DIY with our free checklist
New York married name change options
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Your married name options
Moving your maiden name to become a middle name in New York
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Moving maiden to middle name
Name change for same sex marriages in New York
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Same sex marriages

How do I change names after marriage in New York?

You must state your new name on your marriage license at the time of application. If you want a surname change after marriage and did not list your preferred name, you must remarry. Once married, you are automatically mailed a ‘certified marriage record’ (referred to as a certified copy of marriage certificate in most other states).

Use your certificate to first change names with the SSA, then all other agencies and companies. New York brides have a stack of forms to file; marriage certificate application, the SSA, the DMV, passport, voter registration plus all the other necessary companies; insurance, banks, credit cards, and more! Our kits offer New Yorkers exceptional value as we can personalize all these forms so they are ready to send in just 15 minutes. 

Get your New York marriage license

Apply to any New York town or city clerk for a marriage license. Licenses cost $35 from the New York City Clerk, or $40 in the rest of the state. Licenses are issued on the spot. Your license can be used throughout New York state and there are no residency requirements when applying. Applicants must provide 2 documents from a list of over 8, one showing proof of age and the other proof of Identity. The applicants must state what name they will prefer to use after marriage on the license at the time of application.

Once the license is issued it will be valid after 24 hours, for up to 60 days (180 days for active military). The 24 hour waiting period can be waived if the couple applies for a judicial waiver at the time of applying for their wedding license at no additional fee.

After your marriage is solemnized the officiants will complete the marriage license and return it to the clerk’s office where your license was filed. Your license fee automatically includes the issuing of a certificate of marriage registration (also called a certified copy of marriage certificate), which is generally delivered a few weeks after your wedding.

Get a certified copy of your marriage certificate

There is generally no need to order a certified copy of your marriage certificate, as all New York marriage license fees include the issuing of a certificate after the wedding. This is automatically sent to the couple within 4 weeks of marriage. Duplicate copies can be ordered by following the process below.

New York City If you were married in one of the 5 boroughs of New York City, order a certified copy of your marriage license from the City Clerk. You must return the completed application in person to the relevant City Clerk’s office. Some boroughs allow you to mail your application. You may also start the process online, then attend an office in person to show ID and make payment, or else return documents and payment by mail where permitted. A certified copy of your New York marriage record costs $15 for the first copy then $10 for each subsequent copy.

New York State  If you were married in New York outside of the 5 boroughs apply to either the New York Dept. of Health, or to the clerk in the county where your license was issued. Certified copies of your marriage certificate cost $30 each and are turned around in 10-12 weeks. Add $15 per copy for priority orders (2-4 weeks). Download the Dept. of Health application form here, or else have Easy Name Change prepare the application form for you along with all your name change forms and letters.

 

 

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Prioritize your name change with the SSA

All name changes must start with the SSA. You must complete form SS5 Application for a Social Security Card.  You can file this form in person at any SSA office, or return by mail. There is no fee to have your name changed. Easy Name Change can auto-prepare the SS5 form in your name, along with all your other name change forms and ready to send letters.

Most other agencies, such as the DMV, can only change your name to what is currently recorded with the SSA. It is therefore recommended you wait 2 days after filing for SSA name change before updating your driver’s license.

New York Driver’s License, Permit & ID card name change

Complete the rather lengthy and complex form MV44Application for a Driver’s license or Non-Driver ID Card and file in person. Take your current license, learner permit or non-driver ID card plus a certified copy of your marriage certificate.  

The simplest way to complete this form is with Easy Name Change, as you only need to enter your name change data once, then it will populate across all the necessary name change forms and letters. 

You may take your new married name, as listed on your New York marriage certificate. The NY DMV allows additional name change options to spouses, providing your marriage certificate shows both spouse’s surname at the time of marriage. If so, the NY DMV will allow any of the following changes;

  • Change your middle name to your former surname; or 
  • Choose a different middle name, and
  • Change your surname to your spouse’s surname

Keep in mind that the DMV must still match your name to what is recorded with the SSA, so ensure you have your preferred new name on file with the SSA before visiting a DMV office to make the change. There is a $12.50 fee for a new license or learner permit. Non-driver ID cards cost $5. Your new license will be sent by mail in 2 weeks.

New York vehicle title & registration name change

Complete the necessary sections of form MV-82 Vehicle Registration/Title Application. This is a rather lengthy form and not all sections need to be completed. We provide you with the simplest way to complete this form online as we have customized this the data entry specifically for name change. This way you can be sure you’re completing it correctly. You can also enter the necessary information just only once, then have it populate across all your forms. If you choose to complete the form yourself, ensure you first read the instructions for vehicle registration/title application.

File the completed form in person at any DMV office. Take your marriage certificate and updated driver’s license. You may update your license and vehicle title at the same time, so you don’t need to return a second time after receiving your updated license. 

There is no fee to change names. You will receive updated registration documents immediately and your updated title will be mailed in 60 to 90 days. 

 

 

 

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Passport name change

Expect a free replacement if you apply for a name change within 12 months of issue. File form DS-5504. Passports more than a year old should use form DS-82 and full renewal fees are payable (Passport books $110. Passport cards $30). No credit is given for unused time remaining in your passport.  We provide the necessary passport forms online with our automated form filling software. 

Document preparation

New York residents can get all their state and federal name change forms prepared in their name and ready to send in under 20 minutes.

  • SS-5 for Social Security
  • NY Marriage certificate application
  • NY DMV MV-44, for driver’s license, permit or ID card name change
  • NY DMV MV-82, for vehicle title and registration
  • Passport
  • Voter registration
  • Plus we provide the forms, letters and faxes for an additional 500 companies!

New Yorkers can save themselves about 8 hours of looking for the latest form, understanding how to fill each form, then completing each one. Easy Name Change kits are excellent value for anyone changing names in New York. 

DIY with our free checklist

If you’d rather change names the hard way, download our free checklist here. New York newlyweds typically have 15 to 20 organizations to notify, so allow an additional day to get all your research and paperwork done.

New York married name change options

You must state what your preferred married name will be at the time you first apply for your marriage license. The back of the marriage license application lists the four choices either spouse can take;

  • Either spouse’s current surname
  • The former name of either spouse
  • a name combining into a single surname, all or a segment of, the pre-marriage surname, or any former surname, of each spouse
  • a combination surname separated by a hyphen, provided that each part of such combination surname is the pre-marriage surname, or any former surname, of each of the spouses

 

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Moving your maiden name to become a middle name in New York

Your preferred married name must be listed on your marriage certificate, and moving your pre-married surname to becoming a middle name is not allowed. Interestingly enough, all the necessary government agencies do allow your maiden name to become a middle name, including the SSA, NY DMV and passports office. Read our section on NY DMV name change to learn what other name change options you have in New York.

Name change for same sex marriages in New York

Same sex marriages have been performed and recognized in New York since June 2011. Non-resident same sex couples can apply for a marriage license and be legally wed in New York State. If you reside out of state, check with your state DMV if they recognize interstate same sex marriages, as this can change from state to state.

 

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