If you plan on changing your name after divorce be sure to tell your Mediator. Your Mediator will request a name change with the court. During your hearing the judge will confirm that you would like to change your name. When approved, you will get an letter called NISI 30 days following your court hearing. The court will mail this letter to you. However, if you do not receive this letter 30 days after your divorce is granted, please call the court to request this letter.
Once you have the NISI you can go directly to your local Social Security office. Call your local office to see if they are open to the public. Many offices are closed to the public due to ongoing Covid restrictions and are available by appointment only.
If you do not request a name change before your court hearing you will have to wait 120 days after your divorce is granted. You will at that time be able to use your Divorce Decree to change your name.
*Do not forget to change your name on your bank accounts, credit cards, insurance, passport, investments, tax forms and other official documents.
Below are the documents for your name change with Social Security.
If you need to change your name on your Social Security card, you must show us proof of your legal name change. Documents Social Security may accept to prove a legal name change include:
- Marriage document;
- Divorce decree;
- Certificate of Naturalization showing the new name; or
- Court order approving the name change (NISI)
If the document you provide as evidence of a legal name change does not give us enough information to identify you in our records or if you changed your name more than two years ago (four years ago if you are under 18 years of age), you must show us an identity document in your prior name (as shown in our records). We will accept an identity document in your old name that has expired.
If you do not have an identity document in your prior name, we may accept an unexpired identity document in your new name, as long as we can properly establish your identity in our records.
We can accept only certain documents as proof of identity. An acceptable document must be current (not expired) and show your name, identifying information (date of birth or age) and preferably a recent photograph. For example, as proof of identity Social Security must see your:
- U.S. driver’s license;
- State-issued non-driver identification card; or
- U.S. passport.
If you do not have one of these specific documents or you cannot get a replacement for one of them within 10 days, we will ask to see other documents. Any documents submitted, including the following, must be current (not expired) and show your name, identifying information (date of birth or age) and preferably a recent photograph:
- Employee identification card;
- School identification card;
- Health insurance card (not a Medicare card); or
- U.S. military identification card.
Submitting Documents to Social Security: Please do not mail original primary documents that should be kept secure in your possession, such as driverâ€™s licenses, passports, or immigration documents. If you prefer, you may choose to mail us secondary evidence of identity and less sensitive material. We also offer additional options for submitting documents, including Express Interviews by appointment, and Drop Boxes, where available. Please call your local Social Security office if you would like to drop off your evidence or if you think you may qualify for an in-person appointment. Please note that appointments may not be immediately available, depending on local health and safety conditions and staffing.