What Are My Married Name Options?

What Are My Married Name Options?


What Are My Married Name Options?

As a bride you have 4 options for taking a new name.  You can take any one of the options below and as a married couple you can have different surnames.  Any of these changes can be taken with only your marriage certificate as evidence of your new name.

    • You can change your surname to your husband's surname.  It is a custom for a bride to take her husband’s surname, not the law.  However since the mid 90’s approximately 85% of brides still choose to take their husbands name.
    • You can choose to take a double barrelled surname which is a combination of both your surnames.  For instance if Jane Citizen married John Smith you can take the surname Citizen-Smith or Smith-Citizen.  It's your choice whether to use a hyphen or space between the surnames.  You do not both have to have the same surname, for instance a couple can be Jane Citizen-Smith and John Smith.
    • You can use a combination of your married and maiden name.  Professionally you may want to retain your maiden name, especially if you have developed a reputation in your industry.  Personally you may choose to update your passport, drivers license and various accounts to your partner's surname.
    • You can leave your name as is and take no action.

    Want an entirely different name?

    A couple could change their surname name to a different name entirely, but if it is not one of the above options then they would need to go through a legal name change process via the registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages (BDM).  If a couple decide they both want a new name, it is easiest for the husband to legally change his surname before the wedding, then after the wedding the bride can use the Wedding Certificate to change her surname.

    The law is less clear around the husband changing his surname after marriage. Click here for more information.

    Ready to start changing names?

    No matter if your wedding is still a couple months away or if you already have your marriage certificate, you can start your name change paperwork now. Already married and haven't applied for your marriage certificate? We can provide you with the application form. If you've got a spare 10 minutes you can get virtually all your name change paperwork sorted now.

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    As a bride you have 4 options for taking a new name. Any of these changes can be taken with only your marriage certificate as evidence of your new name.

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