Thursday, 30 April 2015

Marriage - Did you change your name?

As many of you will have already gathered from this blog I am a newlywed and like many I faced the big question, should I take my future husbands surname? Now, the future husband was absolutely adamant there would be no wedding unless I took his name, I had always planned to but the closer it got to the big day the more nervous I became about leaving my maiden name behind.

I eventually came to the decision that we were choosing a traditional Christian church wedding and I have always been brought up with traditional values. As a result, we were creating our own "new" and "unique" family and it didn't make sense to have separate surnames and obviously this would become more important as time goes on and children are brought into the mix.

So, the next step was actually putting all of this into action. The following is a check list of everything you need to do to change your surname.

  • Passport

Now this is a unique one as your passport can be changed into your new name up to three months before your wedding date by asking the post office for the normal passport forms as well as a Post-Date form 2 (PD2), which must be signed by the conductor of the ceremony. Please also be aware the new passport will be valid from your wedding date and you will therefore be unable to travel from the handing in of your old passport until your marriage. The cost for this will be the same as a brand new passport. Please also make sure travel for your honeymoon is booked in your new name if you renew before your wedding date.

I did renew before my wedding date and it was great to travel together as husband and wife with the same surname. It's also a nice reminder that my passport start date is our wedding anniversary! The process was so simple and easy and my passport was up for renewal anyway so it all made total sense to start the name change in advance of the ceremony.

Once your passport has been changed you have kind of started the ball rolling and from experience it is much easier when everything is in your maiden OR your married name. A mixture of both becomes very confusing so my advice would be IF you are going ahead with the change to get on with things as soon as possible post the Honeymoon.

  • Gas and Electric bills
  • Water bill
  • TV Licence
  • TV, Phone and Internet provider
  • Contents Insurance
  • Life Insurance
  • Pension
  • The Deeds to your Home (contact the land registry for a form)
  • Mobile Phone bill
  • Work / National Insurance
  • NHS records
  • Dentist
  • Bank - current accounts, joint accounts, credit cards etc
  • Savings / Premium bond accounts
  • Student Loan Company
  • Driving Licence
  • Council Tax
  • Online accounts such as ASOS and Amazon
  • Online Food Accounts such as Tesco, Waitrose, Ocado etc etc
  • Mortgage
  • Any direct debits from your account
  • Car ownership / Car insurance

The list is long but most changes take a simple phone call or quick log into the account. Some, however, will ask for a certified photocopy of your marriage certificate to be popped in the post, some will return the document for future use, others won't. If you work for a large company like me this is easy, just ask the legal team to certify this for you (maybe get several copies done at the same time). Our mortgage and life insurance providers as well as the DVLA and Land Registry all needed the certified certificate as evidence. Aside from the passport all name changes were free and all the people I spoke to were so friendly and helpful, it became a very easy process once I got started!

Good Luck with your own name changes and please ask for any help and advice needed.