When you get married, it’s common to take your partner’s last name. After all, that is how most people know you. But things change. Maybe you want to go back to your maiden name for personal reasons or because of career implications. Maybe you prefer a double-barreled surname for aesthetic reasons or because of its ease in pronunciation for non-English speakers. Whatever the reason, it is possible to change your last name and resume using your maiden name again if you so desire (and meet the requirements). Reducing your last name to get back to your first one is not as simple as some might think. Despite being an antiquated practice, there are different social pressures that make it seem like a husband has ownership over his wife’s last name once they are married and have children together. This makes changing back difficult in many cases and requires legal assistance. Keep reading to see whether you can give up your husband’s surname and go back to yours again
Can you change your last name?
No, you cannot change your last name in the United States. Your last name is determined by the birth certificate, which cannot be changed. In most U.S. states, only a court can change your name. The only exception is Alaska, which has a unique system for name changes. Residents of Alaska can change their names as many times as they want, as long as it’s not offensive or too similar to another person’s name.
Why Is It So Hard To Change Your Last Name Back After Marriage?
1. Social Pressures
It is hard to change your last name back because of social pressures. It is not uncommon for people to think that a husband has ownership over his wife’s last name once they have children together. These pressures are stronger in some places than others, but they exist almost everywhere.
2. Legal Consequences
Changing your last name back after marriage can also be complicated in some states due to legal consequences. For example, if you were married before and changed your last name, you may have to file for an amendment to the birth certificate with the state. This can be a lengthy process and requires significant time and money on your part. If the amendment doesn’t go through, the courts will most likely recognize your new surname after marriage, but you still need a divorce or annulment to officially change it back again. (If you have questions about divorce or annulment in California, check out our page on California divorce laws.)pl, in New York, a woman can only change her last name to her maiden name if she marries another woman.
3. Lack Of Options
Changing your last name back can be complicated for other reasons. In many places, there are no options for changing your last name after getting married. For example, in California, a person cannot legally change their last name from one that is not their birth certificate’s surname to their birth certificate’s surname after marriage.
4. Family History
Changing your last name back after marriage can also be complicated due to family history. If you change your last name back too soon or not at all because of family history issues, it could cause a lot of problems for your family. Some people believe that changing their last name back can cause their ancestors’ names to be forgotten and cause them to lose their rights to claim land or property from ancestors that have passed away. pl, in some states it can be difficult to change your last name to your maiden name because of marital property laws. You may have to relinquish any claim you have on assets you acquired before tying the knot.
5. Adoption Issues
Some couples choose to adopt a child after they get married and then use the child’s last name for their own. This is a great way to help ensure that the child will not lose his or her family name through adoption, but it can be complicated if the couple does not want to use the child’s last name after adoption.
6. Social stigma
There is also a social stigma against changing back from one’s husband’s surname to one’s maiden name after marriage. It is common for people who change their names back from their husband’s surnames back to their maiden name when they get divorced or remarried because of these social pressures and legal consequences mentioned above.
How To Change Your Last Name When You Get Married
- You can use the same last name as your new spouse but you can also use a different last name. For example, you can start using your husband’s last name or his surname. If you want to keep your maiden name, you should wait until the day of your marriage.
- If you want to change your last name after marriage, it is a good idea to make a note of this in writing. This may be as simple as writing down the person’s full legal name (including their first and middle names) and also their surname so that there is no confusion later on about names or surnames that are similar sounding.
- It is best that both parties agree before making any changes in their respective surnames with regard to changing them after marriage.
- If there is a non-Christian partner in the wedding ceremony (such as a non-Christian friend, family member, or work colleague) then it would be prudent to check with them whether they wish for the couple to change their last names after the marriage has taken place.
- If you are planning on changing your last name after marriage, it is a good idea to discuss this with your legal and/or immigration advisers or a lawyer before it is too late.
- You should also check with the relevant government agency or organization to see if there are any laws that prohibit you from changing your surname once you have married and have already obtained a new passport (if applicable).
- Always remember that you can use your maiden name as long as it is not against any law or convention in your country of residence. If it is, then you will need to change it before using it again otherwise people may think that there are some similarities between the two surnames which could cause confusion for both parties involved in the marriage (as well as others).
- It may be difficult for some people to accept the idea of not using their maiden name after marriage but this does not mean that you should have to give up your name completely. You can still use your maiden name alongside your married name, such as in a business or professional context, or if you are still going by it in your everyday life.
- It is common practice to keep one’s maiden name after marriage in some countries (such as the United Kingdom), while others do not allow this at all (such as the United States). Before getting married it is a good idea to check with the relevant government agency or organization to see whether your country of residence has any laws that prohibit changing one’s surname once they have been married and have already obtained a new passport (if applicable).
There are a few reasons why you might want to change your name during the marriage. It can be done for cultural reasons, to show that you are committed to your partner, or for practical reasons. The most traditional way to do this is to change your name with a marriage license. Another way is to have one spouse add the other’s last name to their ID card or driver’s license. Getting a new credit card or debit card with your new name on it can also help you start using your new last name. If you want to change your name back to your maiden name after changing it to your husband’s, you must be sure to tell your husband that you want to change it back. If you don’t tell him, he will likely remain using his last name even after you change yours.