5 Tips for Changing your Name after Marriage
In Australia still up to 85 per cent of brides decides to change their name after they got married. Even though changing your name is completely up to custom, brides change their names for different reasons, to establish your marriage, or to enter the new phase of your life.
Your legal options for name change after marriage are: changing your surname to your partner’s name, taking a double barrelled surname (combination of both your surnames, using a combination of your maiden and married name, or keep your own name and take no action. If you decide to adopt a completely new surname, you will need to get a legal name change procedure going. But with the options provided above, you simply assume your partner’s name. This also means that you can revert back to your maiden name any time without any reason.
This all sounds rather straightforward, but a bride will experience that there is a lot of work involved in changing your name. That’s why we listed some tips for you.
1. Work out how many copies of your marriage certificate you need
The only documentation you need as evidence of your new name is your marriage certificate; consequently you will need to obtain at least one official copy. Bank, road authorities and the passport office require your full certificate from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages (RBDM) since it entails certain security features that might not be present on the certificate you got on your wedding day. A full copy can be requested by email or in person at the RBDM.
We advise to work out beforehand how many copies you need. It might be necessary to ask for more than one copy since some companies will ask you for your original marriage certificate. Waiting until they have returned your single copy might cost you a lot of time. Having two copies and sending them off at the same time may save you a lot of waiting.
2. Document overload
There are no legal requirements for a company’s policy on how customers can change your name. This means that for every company there can be different forms to fill in and send, a different process, or varying proof of name change requirements. If you doubt on what kind of proof you have to send, or whether it has to be certified, make sure you be cautious. We advise to provide more identification or certified copies so your name change is less likely to be rejected. Hence, you will save yourself the trouble of doing the work again.
Companies set their own policy on how customers have to change their names. You can choose to set aside two days investigating and googling all the different ways applying to your situation or you can save hours of research and paperwork with an Easy Name Change Kit (www.easynamechange.com/au). Brides save an average of six hours finding out with procedures to follow. Easy Name Change has contacted all major Australian companies, and more, and listed what need to be provided to change your name.
All the research is thus done for you. After registering you will nominate the companies applying to your situation. 15 minutes after registration all the letters, forms and information will be emailed to you. All you need to do is sign and send. If one of your companies, such as the local book club, is not enlisted in the checklist, they will also provide a generic letter, making the hassle a lot easier.
4. Set yourself a time limit
We advise you to set yourself a time limit to get all the changes done. If you do not try to get it done in one go, you will end up with different ID or accounts in different names. This can be very inconvenient. And you specifically do not want to end up with having to write another name change letter two years after your marriage. So research thoroughly, and set the time limit, to get all the changes done.
5. Update your passport & driver’s license first
Finally, we strongly suggest starting the name change process with updating your passport or driver’s license. A government issued photo ID (such as your passport or driver’s license) provide solid proof of your new name and other organisations will quickly change your name after seeing this record. Moreover, if you have an unexpected opportunity to update a record in person, such as visiting an insurance office or doctor’s surgery, you will have proof of your name change handy.
Considering Changing Names?
- BDM Certificates
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- Just sign & send!