California Divorce & Changing Your Name With Social Security

As you may or may not know, when you go through a divorce you can make the decision if you want to go back to your former name.  This means, do you want to go back to your maiden name you had prior to marriage?

And no, you can’t use any name you want.  I get asked all the time.  You can go back to your former name only.

That said, if you decide you want to revert to you former name you can do so. The benefit to doing this during the divorce process is that you won’t have to file a separate name change case to change your name later down the road.

So when you get the divorce judgment back from court it is not only your judgment for divorce but the court making an order so you can go back to your former name.  This way you can take the judgment to the Social Security and show them so you can change your name back.

However, the Social Security Administration won’t accept any old copy.  They are requesting a Certified copy of the original. This means that you will have to go down to court and ask the clerks office to pull your divorce case, make a copy of the original and stamp it with a certified stamp to indicate that it is a certified copy of the original divorce judgment.

I wanted to write this because we had a client take a non-certified copy to the Social Security Administration to change her name back and she was turned away and obviously frustrated.