Your Complete Guide to Changing Your Name in Missouri After Marriage

Here, we show Show-Me Staters exactly how to make the surname switch.
Elena Donovan Mauer the knot
Elena Donovan Mauer
Elena Donovan Mauer the knot
Elena Donovan Mauer
Wedding Planning Expert
  • Elena creates content for a variety of print and digital publications, including The Knot, The Bump, Parents, Real Simple, and Good Housekeeping.
  • Elena is a former weddings editor, having held positions at Modern Bride and Bridal Guide and contributed to The Knot Ultimate Wedding Lookbook.
  • Elena is currently Senior Editor for Happify Health, an adjunct instructor for Pace University, a freelance writer, and content con...
Updated Dec 19, 2023
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Many newlyweds look forward to starting married life with a new name. If you're planning on making the change, it may be exciting, but it also means more to-dos to add to your list. In fact, getting a name change in Missouri will take some specific steps that are unique to the state.

That's why we love the name change service HitchSwitch, which really takes the guesswork out of the process. Instead of you searching for the right forms and calling local offices, HitchSwitch provides the instructions and paperwork that are right for your specific name change, then fills out much of it for you. You just add a few personal details and submit it to the proper entities. So before you know it, you're enjoying your new name with less of a hassle along the way.

No matter how you decide to tackle the ol' switcheroo, you should understand what's involved. Here's everything you need to know about how to change your name in Missouri.

In this article:

    Obtaining a Marriage License in Missouri

    The first step in changing your last name in Missouri? Getting an MO marriage license before you get hitched. You'll need one of these for any legal wedding taking place in the state. You'll also need the certified copy to update your moniker postwedding. You and your future spouse should see a county Recorder of Deeds to fill out a marriage license application. Here's a list of locations.

    Getting married elsewhere? Look up your destination's marriage license requirements instead, as that's where you'll apply.

    The documents you need:

    Depending on your county, you may be able to fill out the application in advance. For example, Jackson County has forms available online. You'll still have to show up in person to get your official Missouri marriage license though.

    Whatever the case, you should both plan to bring a driver's license, state ID or passport as proof of identity and age. They will ask for your social security number, so have that handy if you haven't memorized it.

    How much it costs:

    How much is a marriage license in Missouri? It depends on your location. In St. Louis, it's $48. In Jackson County, it's $50. Call ahead to find out the cost in your county, as well as what forms of payment are accepted there. We also recommend inquiring about the cost of certified copies once you've tied the knot. You'll want to have a few on hand to submit during the Missouri name change process.

    Things to remember:

    The marriage license expires after 30 days, so get it within a month before your wedding. Give your officiant the license before your ceremony. Then, after you tie the knot, they should sign the document and return it to the Recorder of Deeds within 15 days of the ceremony. From there, you'll be issued a marriage certificate, which can be used as a legal name change document when you change your name with the Social Security Administration.

    Petitioning for a Name Change in Missouri

    In some cases, a legal name change in Missouri requires filing a petition through the court. This may be necessary if you want to change your first name, for example. This is a lengthy process that involves a hearing, additional fees, and publishing your intent to change your name in a local paper (seriously). That's why it's super-important to make sure you actually need to take this step.

    When you're applying for your marriage license, ask if it can facilitate the type of name change you're seeking. If it's too late for that (aka after the wedding), you can send HitchSwitch's customer service team a picture of your marriage certificate to see if it'll count as your legal name change document.

    For more on filing a petition, see the state courts' Petition for Change of Name page and Missouri name change forms.

    Getting a Social Security Name Change in Missouri

    A Social Security name change—in Missouri and everywhere else in the United States—is a crucial step. It's typically necessary to adjust a driver's license and other documents, so do this one ASAP.

    To change your name with the SSA, mail or bring your documents to your local SSA office. (Search for Missouri locations here.)

    The documents you need:

    • Form SS-5, the application for a Social Security card

    • Proof of your name change (your marriage certificate or court order)

    • ID (your current driver's license, state ID or passport, for example)

    • Proof of citizenship (your birth certificate or passport) if this isn't already established with the SSA

    How much it costs:

    Nothing at all. This one's free. (Yay!)

    Things to remember:

    Your documents need to be original or certified copies, not photocopies. See the SSA's instructions for getting a corrected card for all the details.

    Updating Your Name on Your Passport in Missouri

    After getting a legal name change in Missouri, it's important to change your passport (if you have one) too. How you complete the US passport name change will depend on a number of factors. Learn more at the US Department of State's website—we've highlighted the basics below.

    The documents you need:

    It really all depends on the state of your current passport. You'll need one of these three:

    1. Form DS-5504, or the passport correction form. Use this one if you received your current passport less than a year ago. Fill it out and mail it in along with:

    • Your current passport

    • Your original or certified name change document

    • A color passport photo (this is just one of the many things a HitchSwitch package can help you prepare—it comes free with the service's most popular package)

    2. Form DS-82, or the passport renewal form. Don't qualify for the above form but still have your passport, it's in good condition, you got it when you were at least 16, and it was issued within the past 15 years? This is your form. Complete it and mail it in with:

    • Your current passport

    • Your original or certified name change document

    • A color passport photo

    3. Form DS-11, or the application for a brand new passport. This form requires a visit to a Passport Acceptance Facility (or a Department of State Passport Agency for expedited service)—womp womp. Bring the application along with:

    • Proof of identity (like a driver's license or state or military ID, including a photocopy

    • Proof of citizenship (birth certificate or certificate of naturalization), including a photocopy

    • Your original or certified name change document

    • A color passport photo

    How much it costs:

    Cost depends on the above categories. A passport correction is free (woot!), while a passport renewal is $130 for a full passport book and/or $30 for a passport card. If you're using the DS-11, you'll pay $130 for a book, $30 for a card and $35 in extra fees.

    Things to remember:

    When traveling, your name on your tickets should match your name on your passport. This could mean you'll need an updated passport stat. If that's the case, you can expedite your service for an additional fee. But you actually might want to wait to change your name on your passport until after you return from your honeymoon if you booked using your original/maiden name.

    Changing Your Name on Your Driver's License in Missouri

    Next up? Getting a name change on your Missouri driver's license. To do this, visit your local license office for a duplicate license that displays the new name. If your MO ID is expiring within the next six months, you can get a renewed driver's license instead.

    The documents you need:

    You'll need to bring proof of a legal name change in Missouri (your marriage certificate, court order, and/or updated Social Security card). You may also need to provide additional information and documentation, such as your date and place of birth and proof of a Missouri address. Visit the Missouri Department of Revenue's website for more details. We also encourage you to call your local license office in advance to clarify the specifics. (No one wants to wait in a long line only to find out they've brought the wrong forms.)

    How much it costs:

    It costs $14 for a duplicate Class F license that's good for three years or $20 for one that's good for six years. The full Missouri driver's license fee chart can be found on the DOR's website.

    Things to remember:

    If you are applying for a REAL-ID compliant card, which will be required for domestic air travel starting in 2025, you may need more forms of ID.

    Wrapping Up Your Name Change in Missouri

    Once you've done the above steps, you'll have your legal name change in Missouri complete, but you still won't be totally done (sorry, we wish it weren't so!). Remember to also change your name on all your accounts; your vehicle title and registration; your property, employment and health insurance records; your credit cards and more.

    Feeling overwhelmed? The good news is, HitchSwitch can assist with all of that too. It provides customers with checklists and instruction sheets that guide you along the way and help you make sure you don't forget something important. (Because there's a lot to keep track of!) That way, before you know it, you'll forget all the work of changing your name and you can focus on getting used to writing your new signature! (You know, the other important stuff.)

    This article has been fact-checked and reviewed for accuracy in November 2023.

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