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Is name change in passport after marriage required or suggested?

by Elane

Question: After I get married and change my name, is a new passport "required" or just suggested? Also, if an updated passport is required to go to another country, then shouldn't it just be $20, or is there a "government processing fee" attached to that?

Thanks for your help.

Answer: The short answer is that it depends. Some countries will accept your current passport with your name prior to marriage IF accompanied with a marriage certificate. Other countries require the name in your passport match that on your plane ticket or any other document they might request (e.g., driver's license).

Keeping the current name in your passport would necessitate two things. One, you would need to contact the consular section of every country you intend to visit to ask concerning this issue and, two, you would possibly have to take your marriage certificate with you each time you travel.

The only way to avoid this is to change the name in your passport. If your passport was issued less than a year ago, there is no fee for this service (unless you request expedited service). If your passport was issued more than a year ago, you will have to apply for a passport renewal and pay the appropriate fee.

For complete details, visit the following web page.

Passport Name Change

Comments for Is name change in passport after marriage required or suggested?

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Traveling to Portugal with maiden name on passport
by: Anonymous

Question: My wife and I recently got married in March of this year (2018). We are planning a trip to Portugal next year. Her passport has her maiden name and expires in 2020. We are trying to avoid the hassle of renewing the passport until the end date. Would it be okay to fly with my wife having her maiden name on her passport, despite already updating her drivers license and Social with married last name?

Answer: Yes, it is okay for your wife to use her current passport as long as her tickets are booked in her maiden name.

Do I need to change my passport if everything is still in my maiden name?
by: Anonymous

Question: I recently got married in June 2018. Everything I have (my passport, drivers license, bank cards) are still in my maiden name. I have not changed my name with social security or anything either.

If I book my ticket to Mexico with my maiden name, will I have a problem? Or should I try to get everything changed to my new married name before I go to Mexico?

Answer: You should be able to travel to Mexico with your current passport as long as you book tickets in the name that appears in it.

by: Anonymous

Question: I am applying for a spouse visa. Is it necessary that I change my maiden name in my passport to my husband's name before applying for a spouse visa?

Answer: Please contact the National Visa Center regarding U.S. visas.

ID has married name, Passport has maiden name
by: Anonymous

Question: My passport has my maiden name on it but I recently got married and haven't changed it you match my drivers license which now has my married name on it. We were planning on going to Canada for the day this weekend, can i still use my passport if i have my marriage license?

Answer: You may still use your passport. If you are traveling by air, please book your tickets in your maiden name.

Changing of family name
by: Anonymous

Question: Hello!i just want to ask about changing my status in my passport.I am a Filipina who just got married to an Italian man. I was a widower before and I used my late husband's family name. Should i change my family name? Passport will expire on 2020. Thanks. Good day!

Answer: If you have a Philippine passport, you need to contact the Philippine Embassy or the Philippine Consulate that has jurisdiction over your state of residence in the United States.

Can I use my new passport with my maiden name after marriage?
by: Anonymous

Question: My boyfriend and I are taking a trip to Norway, Sweden, Finland and Denmark this year (2018). All tickets, rail passes and my passport have my maiden name listed on them. My question is that IF we get married just before our trip, do I have to update my passport with my married name? F.Y.I. I was issued my very first passport in early 2018.

Answer: There is no need to update your passport and booking. You may travel with your current passport without issues as long as it matches your tickets.

Marriage Certificate dated prior to most recent passport renewal
by: Melinda G. C.

Question: My husband and I married in September 2017, and had already booked our honeymoon for January 2018. Since my passport was expiring prior to January, I renewed it in my maiden name (to match my international tickets). When we returned from our trip, I began the process of changing my name in February, first visiting the Social Security office and successfully submitting my marriage certificate as proof of name change. I then mailed in Form DS-5504 with my (September 2017) marriage certificate. Two weeks later, it was returned to me as invalid, as "my name change had occurred prior to my most recent passport renewal application.

What do I need to do to ensure that the passport agency accepts my marriage certificate as proof when I submit it again? Would an accompanying letter be adequate explanation?

I have called the agency twice for a "call back" request (and told I would receive a return call within 10 days). Neither time have I received a phone call from an agency representative. Thank you!

Answer: The application should have been accepted since you are applying for the name change within a year of issuance. Re-sending the application with a letter of explanation may help.

Name change and traveling soon
by: Otuechere

Question: I recently got married less than a year ago. I am an American and my spouse is Nigerian. I went back to the USA and changed my government documents including my passport but my Nigerian visa is still valid for another year and it is in my name before marriage. I was told I could enter into Nigeria with my visa. It this true? I am traveling very soon and I have contacted the Nigerian embassy but I got no reply. The place I process my visa said it should be okay to travel with both documents. Can you confirm this?

Answer: We cannot confirm this as entry requirements constantly change. We recommend that you contact the airline you are flying with to verify travel document requirements.

Maiden name on passport, married name on ID
by: Anonymous

Question: Hello. I am going to the Dominican Republic. On my passport is my maiden name. If I book everything thing in my maiden name to match my passport, will I be okay to enter into the DR and back to the US with no problems?

Thank you.

Answer: Yes, you will be okay.

by: Nicol

Question: Hello. My daughter sent off for a new passport with her married name and when she got it, it still had her maiden name on it. So then she went to DC AND THEY MADE HER PAY ANOTHER 170.00 dollars for their mistake. Who can I talk to?

Answer: Passport corrections are processed free of charge. You may file a formal complaint through the National Passport Information Center.

Passport and visa
by: Jay

Question: Please, I need help. My wife (American citizen) and I (Nigerian citizen) got married in Nigeria late last year. Since she went back to the U.S., she has changed her maiden on her ID and now she wants to visit me again because her visa is valid for 2 years. Do we need to re-do her passport because of her name change and if "yes" what happens to the Nigerian visa?

Answer: Your wife may continue to use her passport until it expires. Her ID and passport do not necessarily have to match but her passport and airline tickets do.

by: Andrea David

Question: My husband and I were married in California on November 26, 2016 and immediately returned to Florida where we live. We planned our honeymoon to Spain in January of 2017. Most countries require that a passport be valid for at least six months beyond the completion of a trip. Since my passport was going to expire sooner than that it was advised that I renew it prior to our travels. I had my passport renewed on December 29, 2016 and paid the fee. I had no way of renewing my passport with my new name because I had not yet been issued my certificate of marriage. I live in a different state then where my marriage took place. I had no way to submit a proof of name change. We didn’t receive our marriage certificate until February, 2017, after returning from our honeymoon. On our marriage certificate there is an issue date of February, 2017.

I received a letter in the mail from the department of state, with my marriage certificate and a DS-82 application, telling me to reapply for a new passport and pay another fee. When I called the National Passport Information Center, they advised me to reapply with a DS-11 application and pay another fee. It has been less than a year since I renewed my passport. I attempted to renew December, 2016 and paid the fee. I don’t understand why I should have to pay another fee? At this point, I don’t understand how I am supposed to move forward since I have been given conflicting instruction from the Department of State and the National Passport Information Center. I would really appreciate any help with my situation.

Answer: Since it has been less than a year since your current passport was issued, there should be no feewhen you apply for a name change unless you request expedited service.

The correct form to submit is Form DS-5504; mail it with the following to the address on the form:

1. Current passport
2. New passport photo
3. Original or certified copy of marriage certificate

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