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Recently divorced and changed back to maiden name

by Stephanie
(Portland, OR, USA)

Question: I still have my old driver's license and old bank debit card with my married name and my new license and bank debit card with changed name. My checkbook still has my married name on it. The bank said that doesn't matter since they go by bank account number, not name.

I'm wondering if the same goes for my passport.
My passport has my married name on it. It doesn't expire until 2017 so I'd rather not get a new one if possible. I also want to keep the stamps from past trips.

My friend and I want to take a weekend trip to Vancouver, BC, Canada (we live in the Pacific Northwest) and I'm wondering if I can provide my birth certificate and divorce papers along with my old/new licenses and passport and still be able to cross the border there and back?
Or is it necessary that I get a new passport?
What should I do?

I thank you ahead of time for your advice.


You must travel with your passport in your current legal name. If your name has been legally changed due to divorce, then you should apply for a passport name change before you travel.

Since the passport was issued more than one year ago, you need to apply for a passport renewal using form DS-82 and include evidence of the name change such as the official divorce decree.

You also need to submit one recent passport photo and your current passport. The passport will be returned to you along with the new one.

The application process takes 4-6 weeks for routine service. You can request that it be expedited and receive the passport in 2-3 weeks. If you need to have the name changed more quickly, then you can either visit the Seattle Passport Agency or employ the services of a professional passport expediter.

Comments for Recently divorced and changed back to maiden name

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Passport name is hyphenated and drivers license has maiden name
by: Anonymous

Question: Hi, I got married back in 2012 and added my husbands name to mine (hyphenated). However, we divorced in 2017 and I dropped his name and continued using my maiden name. My passport however has both last names which is mine and his name hyphenated. I changed my drivers license, social security card and other documents back to my maiden name except for my passport which still has both names.

I’m planning a trip out of the country soon and was wondering if I present my passport (which has both names) along with my drivers license (which has only my maiden name)and divorce decree, will it be an issue?. My passport still has a few years left on it so I don’t want to spend the extra money to renew it if I don’t need to. Will they accept my ID and passport? Please help.

Answer: You may travel with your current passport as long as you book tickets in the name that appears in it. TSA requires that the names on your passport and tickets match for air travel security.

Divorced but never changed name in passport
by: Anonymous

Question: I was married in the fall of 2016 (and changed my name) and divorced 6 months later. I never got around to changing my passport to my married name and thus it's still in my maiden name. Is the passport still valid? Or do you need record of my name changes (to my married name and back to my maiden name)?

Answer: Your passport is still valid.

Divorced but traveling - when to change?
by: Anonymous

Question: My married name included my maiden name (like a hyphenated name but without the hyphen). My maiden name has been restored (the second last name has been dropped) but I have a trip booked in April using both last names on the ticket and the passport number that includes that information too.

Do I just leave all my credit cards, SSN, passport, etc as is until after this trip? Or update everything but the passport so it still matched the ticket? It looks like I can travel with court order showing divorce/name restoration to clear things up. What's the best way forward? I'd really like to be free and clear of this extra last name as soon as possible without incurring a lot of extra fees and trouble.

Answer: You may or may not update your IDs and credit cards before your trip. You will most likely be required to present only your passport and as long as the name on it matches that on your ticket, you should be okay.

Do I get my original documents back?
by: Anonymous

Question: If I send in the passport with the application form and the original divorce decree will I get the original documents back? Frankly this makes me nervous to send off such an important document.

Answer: The documents you send with your passport application will be returned to you once the process is completed.

Applying for New Passport
by: Anonymous

Question: I am recently divorced and went back to my maiden name, I have my birth certificate, driver's license, and social security card with my maiden name, instead of sending in a certified copy or original divorce decree, can I just apply for a new passport?

Answer: Yes, you may simply apply for a new passport.

name changes
by: Anonymous

Question: My passport is in my ex-husbands name. I got name changed to maiden name then, before I could change my passport, got remarried and have a new legal name. I have already changed ss# to new married name. Do I have to file 2 forms; one for maiden name and another for new married name? Also what is the fee?

Question: You only need to apply to change the name in your passport one time. Submit both your divorce decree and new marriage certificate with the application form and other required documents.

The form you submit depends on when your current passport was issued and whether or not you can submit evidence of the legal name change. The fee also varies depending on which form you submit. Click the links below for more information.

How to Apply for a Passport Name Change

List of Passport Fees

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