The DMV matches your new name to SSA records. A duplicate license will only be issued in the same name as currently on file with the SSA. This means you should update your name with Social Security first, ensuring our new name is one that is allowed by the DMV. Allow 3 working days for the SSA change to be visible to other agencies. Once you have confirmed the SSA has processed your name change, visit your local DMV office. Your original documents need to be sighted, your new signature witnessed and a new photo may be taken.
When to go to the DMV
While not everyone has the luxury of taking time off work to get their name change sorted, try to attend an office between 9am and 11am mid-week for minimal wait times. Avoid lunchtimes and late afternoons, particularly on Fridays. If your state DMV allows pre-booked appointment times we provide the booking link in your kit.
What to bring to the DMV
You have the option to upgrade to a federally recognized driver’s license (REAL ID) or be issued a license that is valid only for driving, proof of name and address. The benefit of REAL ID is that it establishes federally approved minimum security and identification standards, allowing the holder to board commercial aircraft or enter certain federal facilities. REAL ID has a star and/or flag or says ‘enhanced’.
Take your current license and original marriage certificate or court order. If you only have a religious marriage certificate check if this is accepted in your state. If not you may need to apply for an official marriage certificate from the court clerk or registrar. REAL ID applicants need additional documents which may be listed below. While the exact documents accepted vary between states, one document from each list below is usually acceptable. Always bring originals and, when in doubt, more documents are better than less.
- 1 x proof of legal presence; eg: birth certificate, US passport, US citizenship or green card.
- 2 x proof of residence in your name and showing current address; eg: utility, medical, employment, insurance, bank, or financial institution documents
- proof of social security number; SSA card or W-2
- Existing driver’s license
- Proof of name change; court order, official marriage certificate.
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Get the form for your state DMV
Some states may have a special name change form. The form could be available as a PDF or you may need to complete an original form with a unique barcode. The exact paperwork and proof of identification documents are different between states. To learn the exact name change process for your state, click the link below. If your state has a special form that can be provided as a PDF, we’ll help you personalize it.
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