Getting Your Name Changed on Your Social Security Card


    Legally changing your name for any reason means that you need to have the details updated on your Social Security card. Why might you change your name?

    • You got married
    • You’re divorced and are reverting to your maiden name
    • You’ve been legally adopted
    • You applied for a name change by deed poll

    Is This an Urgent Matter?

    It’s best to get this done as soon as possible. It could:

    • Result in incorrect wage details to be loaded to your record. This is not an issue now but will be when you want to claim benefits
    • Cause problems with tax filing and, subsequently, the payment of your refund

    You want all departments of the government to be working with the same information, so make sure you get this done. Your Social Security number won’t change, but the name is also essential to get right from the start. Are you ready to learn more about name change instructions?

    Be Original

    By that, we mean that all documents must be original and still current. The Department doesn’t work off copies, even if these are notarized.

    Unlike with new cards or replacement cards, the government may use the same document to cover a few of its bases.

    What Do You need to Provide?


    You’ll have to prove that you’re a citizen if you have not done so already. For this, you’ll need either a birth certificate or passport. If you have established citizenship already, don’t worry about this.

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    Proof of Name Change

    You will need to produce the documents proving that your name has been changed legally. These could include:

    • A marriage certificate
    • A decree of divorce
    • A naturalization certificate
    • Court documents showing that the name change has been approved

    In some cases, you may also be required to provide your identity document in the old name, the one that matches the records on file. They will accept an expired ID document here. Here are the circumstances that make this a possibility:

    • The department feels that your documentation does not give enough information to tie into their records
    • If you are over 18 and changed your name more than a couple of years ago
    • If you are under 18 and changed your name more than four years ago


    All ID documents must still be valid and have your full name and either your age or date of birth on them. It is better to provide documentation with a photo on it. All the documentation must be issued within the U.S.

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    You’ll need one of the following to change your name on a social security card:

    • Your driver’s license
    • An ID card issued by your state
    • Your passport

    The documents mentioned above are the best for the task, but if you don’t have any of them, and cannot get a replacement, there are other forms of ID that the department will consider. Again, these must have your name as well as your age or DOB on them. The following might be acceptable:

    • Your ID from work
    • An ID your school issued
    • Your private health insurance card
    • A military ID


    Submit the documents correctly, and it won’t be long before your new Social Security card is on its way to you.

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