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What Documents to Update Post-Marriage

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Guide to Update Documents Post-Marriage

Congratulations! You’re married (or about to be)! Getting married is a captivating moment, and you have a lot of excitement and joy to look forward to. But marriage also comes with a bit of paperwork. To make the transition easy, we put together a checklist, so you know exactly what to do after getting married – we’re helping you update everything that matters. 

Our guide has you covered, from knowing how I change my name on my social security card after marriage to understanding everything else you need to update.

What Documents to Update Post-Marriage: Checklist

There’s a full list of documents to change after getting married. It starts with the marriage certificate (also known as a marriage license). It ends with changing your name on every account that matters. Below, you’ll find a complete list of what changes when you get married, so you know the most common and important documents to focus on.

1. Get a Marriage Certificate

To legally marry in the United States, you need a state-issued marriage certificate. Counties issue these certificates; you can typically receive one from your local county clerk. It’s always a good idea to get more than one certified copy of your marriage license. 

The process and fees associated with the certificate will vary by county. In some places, they are free. In other places, they can be costly. Notably, in Hawaii, the certificate comes with a $65 fee.

2. Update Social Security Card

One of the first things many people rush to take care of is getting a new Social Security card. You must update your Social Security card if you legally change your name. However, if you choose not to change your name after getting married, you  don’t need to get a new Social Security card.

To get a new Social Security card, you must submit a formal application through the mail. You’ll need to include some additional items with the application, such as a copy of your marriage license, and a U.S. identification card or a viable alternative identification card. Be sure to check the complete list of qualified IDs and the needed paperwork before you submit your application.

3. New Driver’s License

Like your Social Security card, you only need to update your driver’s license if you change your name when you marry. If that’s the case, the license must be updated with your state DMV. According to the DMV, you should update your Social Security documents before you update your driver’s license.

The Hawaii DMV website lists all the requirements for this process. It’s important to know, your name change must be completed in person. Each county has a DMV that can process these changes.

4. Update Bank Accounts

Updating bank accounts can be a little more complicated. If you’re changing your name, it’s best to contact your financial institution, and they’ll be able to walk you through the steps needed to complete the change. If you and your spouse are planning on combining finances, you can work with the bank to get joint accounts or add one another to existing accounts. Be sure to bring a Photo ID and Social Security card when you go.

5. Credit Cards & Loans

Credit cards and loans will be similar to changing bank accounts. For the most part, you need to contact the issuer of the card or lender and inform them of your name change. They will walk you through the process and request any required documents.

If you want to add a spouse to a credit card, you’ll need to work with the card issuer to make that happen. It can be done with most credit cards, but the process might involve more. Your spouse may need to submit financial information and undergo a credit check. Additionally, you will usually be financially responsible for the entire balance — including your spouse’s spending.

6. Payroll Information

If you receive a paycheck, then this update is paramount, especially if you change your name on your bank account and other financial information. In that case, you also need to change your name with your employer’s payroll account. If the name on your paycheck does not match your bank account, you might have problems depositing it.

7. Miscellaneous Accounts to Update

There are several additional documents that need an update if you change your name. Here’s a list of who to notify when you get married, and how you can update each item.

  • Trust & Will – Estate planning documents like your Trust and Will determine how your assets are handled upon death. While it’s an unpleasant topic, people typically want to provide for their spouses during these events. An updated Trust and Will is necessary for this.
  • Post Office If you change your name or address with marriage, you need to inform the post office, so they properly handle your mail.
  • Insurance – Any insurance policies you have, from auto to life to health, need your updated name. You’ll have to go through the process with each provider.
  • Passport – If you have a passport, you must also update your name there. You can follow the steps on the US Department of State website to do this.
  • Voter Registration – Yet again, you need the correct name to fill out a ballot. Be sure to update your voter registration before the next election.
  • Rental Leases – Lastly, any rental leases need the correct name. The name on your lease must match your name with formal government IDs and your financial information. This can be done directly with your landlord or property manager.

Will Your Credit Score Be Impacted?

According to Experian, getting married does not directly impact your credit score. You and your spouse have independent credit histories, and that doesn’t suddenly change with marriage. If you apply for loans together, both parties’ credit scores will matter. So, your spouse cannot lower your credit score (unless you combine finances entirely and don’t manage your debts well). However, your new partner’s credit can impact your ability to get a loan.

Final Thoughts

Congratulations on your marriage! Sure, it comes with some paperwork, but that’s just a minor investment of time and energy. Meanwhile, you just committed to a lifetime of happiness. So, take a few moments to update your paperwork, and then you can focus the rest of your energy on marital bliss!

Update Your Accounts with HFSFCU

Updating your names and information is easy if you have any accounts with HFS FCU. Reach out to us today, and we’ll walk you through everything in minutes.