Online Services, Social Security Number and Card

Need to Change Your Name on Your Social Security Card?

October 9, 2018 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: April 11, 2022

A stack of social security cardsAre you changing your name? If so, let Social Security know so we can update your information, send you a corrected card, and make sure you get the benefits you’ve earned.

To change your name on your card, you must show us documents proving your legal name change and identity. If you are a U.S. citizen, you also must show us a document proving your U.S. citizenship, if it is not already in our records. You must present original documents or copies certified by the agency that issued them. We can’t accept photocopies or notarized copies.

To prove your legal name change, you must show one of the following documents:

  • Marriage document.
  • Divorce decree.
  • Certificate of naturalization showing a new name.
  • Court order for a name change.

To prove your identity, you must show an unexpired document showing your name, identifying information, and photograph, such as one of the following:

  • U.S. driver’s license.
  • State-issued non-driver’s identification card.
  • U.S. passport.

If you don’t have one of those documents available, we may be able to accept your:

  • Employer identification card.
  • School identification card.
  • Health insurance card.
  • U.S. military identification card.

To prove your U.S. citizenship, you must show one of the following documents:

  • U.S. birth certificate.
  • U.S. Consular Report of Birth Abroad.
  • U.S. passport (unexpired).
  • Certificate of Naturalization.
  • Certificate of Citizenship.

Whatever your reason for your name change, Social Security is here to help you with the new… you! Fill out the form online and follow the instructions to ensure your Social Security card is delivered in a timely manner. You can also locate your local field office so you can apply for your updated card and show your required documents in person.

For complete instructions, visit our Social Security Number and Card page, which includes information for non-citizens. And remember, if you simply need to replace a lost Social Security card, but don’t need to change your name, you can — in most states — request your replacement card online using your personal my Social Security account.

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About the Author

Jim Borland, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Communications

Jim Borland, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Communications


  1. McCullough C.

    Thank you for this information, although, it doesn’t answer my below questions. I assume I’m not the only one that would like additional information.
    I recently mailed in a name change form and included the necessary original documents (passport, etc)
    – When will my original documents be returned to me?
    -How long will it take to receive a new social security card?
    – Is there any way I can follow up with the status of the change?

    Thank you

    • Ann C.

      Hi. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. If you applied for a Social Security card and have not received it, you will need to contact the office where you applied to check the status. We hope this helps.

  2. Maurice S.

    I have moved. How do I change my address for Social Security and Medicare?

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Maurice. If you are receiving Social Security retirement or disability, you can create a personal my Social Security account to change your address online. Thanks!

  3. Susan A.

    I keep getting messages on my cell phone that my SSN has been frozen due to suspicious activity, is this a scam

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Susan. Thanks for checking in with us. We do not usually make random calls. If anyone receives calls saying that they are from Social Security, do not give out any personal information. Suspicious calls should be reported to the Office of the Inspector General at 1-800-269-0271 or online. You can find additional information here. We hope this helps.

  4. Patricia G.

    i have forgotten my password for my account and have tried to access for the past 4 months. i have entered my address each time and have never received a letter with information to change it . this is ridiculous. you have my email address, home address, my ph num is 813 465 4823. send me a text, send me an email, do something, move into the 21st century, because evidently you can’t lick a stamp.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Patricia. We are sorry to hear about your experience and frustration. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. If you are still unable to access your account or encounter a problem with your personal my Social Security account, you may:
      •Call us at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778), Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. At the voice prompt, say “helpdesk”; or
      •Contact your local Social Security office. Just a reminder – please be cautious about posting personal information on social media. We hope this helps.

  5. Cecilia L.

    I was inquiring on information for a grown child’ who’s father that has passed away. Are they entitled to collect the $ 255.00 one time payment. The child did not reside with the parent at the time of his passing. If so, what steps are they required to take. Thank you for any an all information on this matter.

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Cecilia. Thanks for your question. The Lump-Sum Death benefit of $255 (a one-time payment) may be payable upon the death of a person who has worked long enough to be insured under Social Security. An application for the Lump-Sum death payment must be submitted within two years from the insured person’s death. Only eligible family members may be able to receive the one-time payment and monthly survivor benefits. For more information on this, please read our publication, How Social Security Can Help You When a Family Member Dies. We hope this helps.

  6. JoAnn J.

    The middle initial on my SScard is B. I go by JoAnn J Cook. Would like a new card

  7. Nancy L.

    I am getting married and wish to continue using my name for business purposes, credit card, bank account. However I wish to use my husband’s last name for most everythingelse? Do I need to change my Social Security info?

  8. Martina m.

    Hi i have tried to register on line, but due to the fact thst i live in Ireland, there is no space to put this country and we donot have a zip code. I wanted to give my address here for further notices or letters. Thamk you
    Martina t. Mulledy

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Martina. We’re sorry for any inconvenience. You will need a U.S. address to register for a my Social Security account. Since you are living outside of the U.S., please contact your Federal Benefits Unit for assistance. Hope this helps!

  9. George L.

    My wife and I have not received new cards with new nos. Why?

  10. Kaye M.

    I need to change my address. Can I do this online.?

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Kaye. Thanks for your question. If you are receiving Social Security retirement or disability, you can create a personal my Social Security account to change your address online. If you are receiving Supplemental Security Income, you should contact your local office immediately. We hope this helps.

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