Important Due to Covid-19, processing times for passports are taking longer than normal for both standard and expedited services.

Do I need a new passport if my new married surname is hyphenated?

by Carol

Question: I am recently married and my new surname is hyphenated. I want to change my driver's license to my new hyphenated surname, do I need to do the same with my passport?

Answer: Yes, you need to change the name in your passport since you have a new legal name. A person may have a hyphenated surname placed in a passport, providing the original marriage certificate, or acceptable identification in the hyphenated name, is produced. The surname joined by the hyphen may be written in the order in which the applicant uses them.

For more information about how to apply for a passport name change, click the link below.

Passport Name Change

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by: Anonymous

Question: The U.S. appointment scheduling website is refusing to accept my name which has a hyphen in it. I have always used a hyphen in my name, and since I am supposed to enter my name exactly as it appears on my passport, I am not sure what to do. Do I just drop my hyphen? On all my documents, I have hyphens in my name.

Answer: The website you mentioned is not a legitimate site managed by the U.S. Department of State. There is currently no online appointment system in place -- the Department of State has suspended it in 2021.

If you need to secure an appointment at a regional agency due to urgent travel, you may call 1-877-487-2778 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET, Mondays through Fridays. If you're traveling due to a life-or-death emergency, call 1-877-487-2778 Mondays through Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. (ET), or 202-647-4000 outside of these hours.

Alternatively, you may employ the services of a private courier to take care of your application and get your passport as fast you need it.

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Drop hyphenated name
by: Anonymous

Question: My expired passport has a hyphenated name (maiden name - married name) and I would like to drop the hyphenated and just use my married name. Can I renew the passport and just use my married last name?

Answer: Your passport will be renewed in the name that appears in the previous one if you do not include evidence of legal name change.

Since this is not a legal name change, you need to submit a new application in person and pay the application and execution fees.

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Standard service may take up to 18 weeks, 12 weeks if you expedite. We strongly recommend not making any final travel arrangements until your new passport arrives.

Hyphen omitted from family name
by: Anonymous

Question: My family name is hyphenated, but the hyphen was omitted from my family name on my UK visa page. Will this be an issue for me?

Answer: Please contact the British Embassy regarding British visas and errors on them.

Hyphen between two last names
by: NY

Question: I will be naturalized next month and I was advised by the Immigration Officer during interview that they don't accept hyphen in between my two last names. So my certification will be printed without hyphen. All of my IDs and cards have a hyphen (SSN, DL, Credit Cards and even my marriage certificate). Can I still add the hyphen in between my two last names when applying a U.S. passport or should I follow the name on my naturalization certificate (no hyphen)?

Answer: You may use the hyphen. The passport will be issued in the name you enter in the application since it matches your ID (driver's license).

Hyphenated Married name
by: Anonymous

Question: I just got married and hyphenated my name. Do I need to change the name on my passport or can I just use my current passport with just my maiden name on it? My drivers license has my hyphenated married name.

Answer: You may continue to use your current passport. You will not have any issues traveling as long as you book your tickets in your maiden name to match your passport.

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UPDATE: Mailing delays and high demand are impacting passport processing. The Department of State's processing times begin when applications are received at a passport agency or center and not when you mail them or apply at a local acceptance facility.

Standard service may take between 10 and 13 weeks. This timeframe does not include delivery time. Mailing times vary across the country.

Expedited service takes from 7 to 9 weeks excluding mailing times on the front and back end. Current mailing delays are significant. Requesting 1-2-day mailing service is recommended.

Regional passport agencies are offering two types of appointments: Life-of-Death Emergency Service and Urgent Travel Service.

Life-or-death emergencies are serious illnesses, injuries, or deaths in your immediate family (parent, legal guardian, child, spouse, sibling, and grandparent) that require you to travel outside the United States within 3 business days.

If you need to travel due to a qualified life-or-death emergency, please call the National Passport Information Center for an appointment.

For Urgent Travel Service, you need to call 14 days before your scheduled international travel or 28 days if you also need to secure a foreign visa.

If you need to travel urgently for reasons other than a life-or-death emergency, please call the NPIC.

A registered expedited passport courier can often assist in obtaining a passport as quickly as the same day. You can learn more about this service here.

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