Report Name Change before You File Taxes

People change their name for a variety of reasons: marriage, divorce, re-marriage, adoption, et cetera. Did you change your name last year? Did a dependent have a name change? If the answer to either question is yes, be sure to notify the Social Security Administration (SSA) before you file your tax return with the IRS.

This is very important because the name on your tax return must match SSA records. If the names do not match, you are likely to get a letter from the IRS about the mismatch. A mismatch will very probably delay any refund that you were expecting.

Be sure to contact SSA if:

  • You got married or divorced and you changed your name.
  • A dependent you claim had a name change. For example, this would apply if you adopted a child and that child’s last name changed.

File Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card, with the SSA to let them know about a name change. You can get the form on, by calling 800-772-1213, or at an SSA office.

You can file Form SS-5 at an SSA office or by mail. Your new card will have the same SSN as before but will show your new name.


IRS Circular 230 Disclosure

Pursuant to IRS Regulations, we inform you that any tax advice provided or implied on this post (including attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer.

While the information contained in this post is believed to be reliable, we cannot guarantee its accuracy or completeness.