So one of the most exciting things about getting married is the idea of changing your name so that you and your new husband are really and truly one unit. You think about how it sounds, practice writing your new signature and even decide what your monogram will look like. But one of the not so exciting things about getting married is the idea of having to actually deal with changing your name! Ugh, knowing you have to search all over the web for zillions of forms, spending hours at state and government offices to process everything – it just seems like such a headache. Well, I can tell you that I discovered the easiest, best way to do it! It’s a new company called Maidenchange, and it’s not just life changing, it’s also the best $29-$50 bucks you’ll spend towards your nuptials (depending on which package you buy – I tried the standard package).*
First of all, it’s so easy! I simply filled out a form online with all the basic info needed. Not a specific driver’s license form or your passport renewal form – jut an easy, general form on the website. Boom. Before I knew it, my package arrived with ALL of the forms I could possibly need ALREADY FILLED OUT, minus my social security number and a few signature lines. And can I just digress for a quick second to say that getting the package with my new, soon-to-be married name was totally thrilling?! It was like the highlight of my day. Oh, and to be clear, I had done all of this before the wedding, so that I’d be ready to start submitting everything asap afterwards.
Ok, back to this awesome service. I got forms for social security card, driver’s license, passport, car title and registration, voter registration, credit card and Amex forms and even a few copies of the form to use so I can change my name at my bank and for other financial accounts! Plus, Maidenchange even sent me a checklist to go along with each form identifying what it is, what I still needed to bring or send in along with that form, and what still needed to be done on that form (such as fill in SS# and sign). Literally everything I could need and as easy as could be.
A few things to know, that I hadn’t been totally aware of in advance, which will help manage your own expectations for your name change. First, it can take several weeks for your state to send you your actual marriage license, which you need for pretty much each form, so don’t expect to be able start mailing in your forms the next day after your wedding. Your most important changes (driver’s license, passport, social security card) require a certified copy of your marriage license, so a photocopy won’t cut it. This means you either have to send in the one copy you have (they will all return it to you by mail), or you have to go to your city clerk office and pay for additional certified copies with the raised seal. Depending on your own personal timeline and patience level, getting it all done can end up taking as little as about 4 weeks from the time you have your marriage license, up to a few months if you keep reusing the one certified copy that you have. I’m in New York City and had to wait more than a month to get my original marriage certificate, but then I did purchase additional copies in order to expedite my own process. I am currently the proud holder of a brand new social security card and driver’s license, and am semi-patiently awaiting my new passport.
I would seriously tell anyone and everyone to check out this service, I found it to be totally worth it. And I’m so excited and proud to show off my new name!
*I did not pay for this service.