How to Legally Change Your Name After Marriage in Ohio

By Larissa Bodniowycz, J.D.

How to Legally Change Your Name After Marriage in Ohio

By Larissa Bodniowycz, J.D.

When you get married, there are several name-change options to consider. You can keep your same name, take your partner's last name, hyphenate your name, make your old last name your middle name, or create a new family name together. The process for changing your name in Ohio after a marriage depends on which partner is requesting the name change.

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Wife Wants to Change Name

It's relatively easy for a woman to change her name after marriage since she can make the request when she submits the paperwork for her marriage license.

When the bride-to-be goes to the court to request the marriage license, the clerk will most likely ask if she wants to change her name. The request for a name change will be filed alongside the marriage license, and when the certified marriage certificate is issued, this can be used as proof of the name change.

Husband Wants to Change Name

It's more difficult for a man to take his wife's name in Ohio. A husband who wants to take his wife's name must obtain approval from his county's probate court to change his last name or hyphenate his name to include his wife's.

To obtain approval, the husband must file a petition for a name change and pay the filing fee. After filing the appropriate forms, the court will give him a date to appear before a judge. The husband must then publish notice of the intended name change with a local newspaper at least 30 days prior to the hearing date. The publication must include his current name, the proposed new name, the reason he wants to change his name (marriage), and the date and location of the hearing. Some courts will handle the publication requirement for an additional fee.

The final step is the hearing. The husband must bring proof of publication of the proposed name change to the hearing. At the hearing, he will tell the judge his reasons for petitioning a name change. If the judge grants the request, the judge will issue a court order approving the new name.

Change Your Name With Official Agencies

After obtaining approval of a name change, the husband or wife must provide notice of the name change to any individuals, agencies, and companies that have the spouse's old name.

The two most important government agencies to notify are the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV). The SSA should be notified first because the BMV must be able to connect a new name with a corresponding social security number.

The spouse that's changed their name should also change their name with their employer, on their passport, bank and investment accounts, credit cards, car title, any leases or mortgages, and on any other legal documents.

To save time and hassle, you can use an online legal service provider to prepare all the required documentation for a name change in Ohio for you.

This portion of the site is for informational purposes only. The content is not legal advice. The statements and opinions are the expression of author, not LegalZoom, and have not been evaluated by LegalZoom for accuracy, completeness, or changes in the law.

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