by Patricia Thibault

This time of year, we see a lot of weddings,that means name changes. If you need to change your name due to marriage, divorce, or any reason, report the change to Social Security.

Why? First, IRS and Social Security match computer records. If the name and Social Security number you report on your tax return do not match the name and Social Security number in our records, it could delay the processing of your return as well as any tax refund you might be due.

The second reason it is important to make sure your Social Security records are up-to-date is because your potential Social Security benefits are based almost entirely on the earnings record we maintain for you. If your employer reports earnings to the government under your new name, and your Social Security record still shows your old name, those earnings may not get credited to your record and may lead to lower future benefits.

To change your name, you must apply for a new Social Security card. Go to and print out “Application Form SS-5.” The form tells you what evidence you need to submit.

For more information go to

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