Changing Your Name After Marriage FAQ

I'm a woman who is planning to be married soon. Do I have to take my husband's name?

No. When you marry, you are free to keep your own name or take your husband's name, without a court-ordered name change. In most states your husband can adopt your name, instead, if that's what you both prefer. However, in general you'll need a court order if you and your husband both want to change to a different name that you share. Give some careful thought to what name feels best for you. You can save yourself considerable time and trouble by making sure you are happy with your choice of name before you change any records.

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