How to Change your Name in California after Getting Married

Although some might find it outdated, most newlyweds today still change their last name after getting married. It’s a tradition that goes back a long time, and most folks simply don’t want to break with tradition. 

If you’re getting married in California, congratulations! Everyone at CA Storage wishes you and your spouse the best for a long and happy marriage! If you’re looking for information on how to change your name in California after marriage, read on. We’ve got some valuable and essential information for you below.

Changing your Name in California Involves 4 Principal Steps

There are 4 steps for how to change your name in California after marriage, including:

  1. Applying for a marriage license or court order.
  2. Sharing the information with the Social Security Administration.
  3. Updating your Passport (if you have one)
  4. Getting a new CA state ID. (Typically a driver’s license.)

1. Applying for a Marriage License

To apply for a marriage license, you and your spouse-to-be must go to your local county clerk’s office. You’ll need valid IDs; depending on which county in CA you reside, you may also need other documentation, so check ahead of time. After you’re married, you have to request a marriage certificate. This document will legally prove that you’ve changed your name in California. 

Tip: It’s best to get 3 or 4 marriage certificate copies as you’ll need them for other tasks.

2. Changing your Name with Social Security

After you’ve successfully applied and received your marriage certificate, it’s time to change your name with Social Security. The best place to do that is on the SSA website, which you can visit here. You will need to download their application form and print it out when you do. Then, fill in the form completely and mail it to the SSA (or submit it in person). You need to include an original or certified copy of your marriage license, proof of identity, and proof of citizenship. Your current state ID will serve as proof of identity. As for proof of citizenship, the best document is your birth certificate.

Tip: Read our post about how to store your wedding dress to avoid causing damage.

3. Changing the Name on your Passport 

The process to change the name on your passport is the same in every state, including California. There are three different forms you can use depending on your situation, including:

  • DS-5504. Use this form if your passport is less than a year old. There’s no cost to do this, but you need to send back your current passport. You will also need to send your marriage certificate and a new passport photo.
  • DS-82. Use this form if, at the time you got your passport, you were at least 16 years old. Also, the issue date has to be within the last 15 years. Your marriage certificate and a new passport photo are necessary, as with the first form.
  • DS-11. This third option is only necessary if you don’t qualify for the first two options. You will need to submit proof of citizenship (your birth certificate) plus a valid photocopy of your ID. Also, you’ll need a passport photo and your marriage certificate. 

4. Getting a New CA State ID / Driver’s License

To change your name in California after marriage, you need to visit the DMV. To expedite the process, you can schedule an appointment. The DMV will need a certified copy of your marriage certificate. Also, it’s best to do this after you’ve changed your name with the Social Security Administration. (The DMV verifies it  automatically.)

How to Change your Name in California after Getting Married, brought to you by CA Storage

We hope today’s information will make changing your name in California a stress-free task. If you need help storing your older things after getting married, CA Storage can help!  We have safe, clean storage units in California, ready to store anything you need.

Many newlyweds store things with us that they can’t fit in their new apartments. Extra sofas, dressers, beds, etc.  Kitchen tables and chairs, kitchenware, lawn equipment, other items, and even cars! It’s the best way to ensure your things stay safe until you have a home big enough to use everything.

For questions about renting a self-storage unit in California, visit the CA Storage location nearest you. The onsite manager can help you choose the best size storage unit for your specific needs. You can also rent a California storage unit online in just 10 minutes from CA Storage. From everyone here, we wish you the very best for a long, joyful marriage! 

Read more on the CA Storage blog!

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