We hear wedding bells! While many brides mention post-wedding blues, there are plenty of things to keep the magic going long after the big day. Mainly, starting the name change process. Each province has its own laws and restrictions, but the general process of legally changing your name after marriage is pretty straightforward. We've put together a simple checklist to get you started on the right track to changing your name within Canada.
Name Change Checklist After Marriage in Canada
To legally change your name through marriage, you must apply for a marriage certificate online. A marriage certificate is a document containing the details of a marriage performed with a certain province. You can order a copy or multiple copies online for a fee (which ranges by province). You can use this certificate to change your name, process a divorce, or as a record of family history.
Before you can get a marriage certificate, your marriage needs to be registered. The officiant who performed the marriage will send your completed and signed marriage licence to ServiceOntario so the marriage can be registered. You can order a marriage certificate about 6-8 weeks after this happens. After your wedding, order your certificate and you can expect to receive it in the mail, which serves as your official legal name document. You'll want to keep your marriage certificate handy, as you'll need the original copy as physical proof to update your name on any government document.
The first place to update your name after your marriage is your driver's license, since it is one of the easiest documents to obtain and will help serve as proof of your name change for future document updates.
You can then proceed to change your name on your health card, passport and other federal and provincial documents.
Afterwards, you'll further need to update your:
- Vehicle Registration
- Social Security Card
- Voter Registration
- Canadian Postal Service
- Credit Cards
- Investment Accounts
- Work HR Department
Note, each province varies greatly on what is required to update your name. Currently, it is estimated it takes the average bride anywhere between 8-10+ hours of reach and time to complete the name change process.
Need help changing your name after marriage? Namesake has taken the stress out of changing your last name. We provides a name change box, filled with all the required provincial and federal forms to legally change your name, including auto-populated with your information.