Changing your name after marriage checklist

Changing your name after marriage

You will be dealing with government departments so make sure you have all your documents and identification in order. A great thing to remember when you are completing the Notice of Intended Marriage is to keep the identification documents you use handy so they can be easily accessed to change your name.

In a simple 5-point checklist, you will be able to have your name changed. Then it’s time to start practicing your new signature.

Is changing your name after marriage important to you?
There are many reasons why people select to change their name after marriage and why some don’t.

One reason why people select to change their surname is for children, to try and help create a link within the family unit.
Another is all about love and for the couple to formally reflect this by changing to one or a combination of both of their surnames.
Some people just like the sound of their partner’s name, sometimes more than their own. Other people relate their maiden name with bad memories or trauma so also select to make the change.

Doctors, lawyers, teachers, and other people who work in prominent fields tend to not use their spouse’s name due to their names being an integral part of their positions.

However, in a report by ABC News, Most Australian women still take their husband’s name after marriage.

Your surname options after you are married are:
Taking your partner’s surname
Your partner taking your surname
Or you combine both surnames with a hyphen

No matter what you decide it’s not the law that you need to change your name so the choice comes down to what you want.

5 Point Checklist for changing your surname when married

1. You will need an official marriage certificate
To update your married surname, you need an official marriage certificate (not a commemorative certificate) from the registry in the state or territory where you were married. You will be able to apply for this after your celebrant or minister has registered your wedding with the department of Birth, Deaths, and Marriages.
You can apply for a marriage certificate online or your celebrant may offer this as a service to apply for it on your behalf.
The current fee for this certificate starts at $60 for the standard marriage certificate. 

2. Next you will need to update your name on your NSW Driver Licence.
This can be done at your nearest Service NSW center.
You will need to take your NSW license along with your official marriage certificate.

3. Update your name on your Medicare Card 
When you have your new driver’s license you will then need to change your surname on your Medicare card.
This can be done at a Medicare Service Centre or by emailing Medicare.

4. Change the name on your bank accounts.
You will need to take the marriage certificate from Birth, Deaths, and Marriages along with your driver’s license and Medicare card as proof of your updated married name.

5. Update your name everywhere else
You will need the same documents used with your banks to change your name at these places.
Then it’s pounding the pavement to change your name at all the other places you currently use your current surname on. To make it a little easier make a list.
It’s also good to have a copy of your marriage certificate from BDM handy just in case you miss a place. Usually, within a year all memberships and accounts will have arrived so if one has been missed it’s easy to change it then.

If you need some more help then After The Wedding has an easy, complete Marriage Name Change Kit to change your name after marriage.

In the end, you choose if you are going to change your surname after you’re married.
Most importantly if you are going to change your surname don’t forget to update all your identification documents, personal accounts, and bank accounts.

If you need any further help and would like to talk about changing your surname after marriage please send me an email.



AboutTanya McDonald
It goes without saying that being a marriage celebrant is an honour and a privilege. I have loved weddings and what they represent for as long as I can remember. Since becoming a celebrant I am able to fulfill my passion and at the same time treasure each opportunity I have to work with couples to help them bring their dreams and ideas into life through their ceremonies. I have been a fully authorised marriage celebrant since 2014 and I have helped couples enjoy thier journey to the altar since then. If you need a celebrant, I would love to discuss your ceremony with you.