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Whether you've recently married or divorced, adopted a child or gone through some other big change, you'll want to make sure all of your important documents and accounts are updated with the new name.
You probably have already thought of some of the most obvious documents that need to be updated: your driver's license, Social Security card, and bank/credit card accounts. However, there are probably dozens - if not hundreds! - more that haven't crossed your mind. What about professional licensing? Your passport? Vehicle titles and registration? Loyalty programs? Voter registration?
Monday, August 2nd
Most name change services only offer help if you're changing your name after a marriage or divorce, but not for any other reason. That's where our highest-ranked provider, LegalZoom, comes in. This service can help you legally change your name - or obtain a name change for a minor - by walking you through all of the required steps to file with the court in your state, get a hearing date, publish your name change and have it granted by the court.
2 Name Change Packages To Choose From
LegalZoom has two name change packages: adult and minor. Simple, right? You'll pay $139 for the former and $165 for the latter. Each package includes the following:
100% Satisfaction Guarantee
You also get LegalZoom's lifetime customer support and 100% satisfaction guarantee: if you're unhappy with their name change service for any reason, they'll work with you to fix the problem at no extra charge - or refund your fees.
More Than Just A Simple Name Change
One thing to note: this service might be overkill if you are just doing a simple name change due to marriage. Why? You've already fulfilled the legal requirements for changing it (a marriage license and finalized wedding), so you don't need to have a hearing date or publish your information to make it official. In that case, you might want to save some cash and go with one of the other highly-rated services in our review.
Most Comprehensive Option
That's not to say you can't use LegalZoom to change names after your wedding - and if your marriage or your name change go beyond the traditional bride-takes-on-groom's-name situation, you might find that LegalZoom is the most comprehensive, reliable option. Some name change services are very clear that they don't specialize in hyphenating both spouses' last names, same-sex couples, grooms taking on their brides' surnames, and so forth. While LegalZoom will cost a little more, you'll have the added reassurance that everything has been taken care of, double-checked, and is guaranteed to meet all of the legal requirements in your state.
LegalZoom isn't the cheapest name change service out there, but it's definitely the most thorough - and offers the broadest array of options for legally taking on a new name. In business for nearly two decades, and with accreditation and an "A+" rating from the Better Business Bureau, it's easy to see why LegalZoom earns our highest recommendation for name change services for every possible client situation.
Minnesota-based NewlyNamed was created by Colie Christensen in 2019, making this name change service one of the freshest in the industry. Featured in Fortune Magazine and with plenty of positive reviews from around the country, this platform is one of the easiest to use if you need to change your name.
2 Name Change Packages
There are two package options here, and the only difference is if you want your documents printed and sent to you with prepaid mailing envelopes, or if you prefer to print everything yourself and take care of the mailing supplies. You'll pay $39 for the DIY package and $89 for the printed-and-posted selection - so it's up to you to determine if the convenience and postage are worth the extra $50.
Name Change Package Features
Both packages offer the following features:
Many Places Where Your Name Should Be Changed
We appreciate that NewlyNamed gives you an idea of exactly which places they include in their name change instructions. We spotted the typical ones like Social Security, US passport, and driver's license, but there were quite a few we never thought of (TSA Precheck, hotel and airline loyalty programs, and even the IRS).
Should Work For Anyone
It took a lot of digging through the site, but we eventually found that NewlyNamed can be used by anyone changing their name because of marriage or divorce. This service doesn't offer options for court-ordered legal name changes or new legal first names. There also wasn't much clarification as to how NewlyNamed works for same-sex couples, just the statement that it "works for anyone as long as you have a certified marriage certificate" and you follow the marriage laws of your state. If that applies to you and your significant other, we encourage you to check in with NewlyNamed before signing up, just to make sure they can meet your expectations with their service.
100% Satisfaction Guarantee
NewlyNamed offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you get your kit and aren't happy for any reason, you should have no problem getting a refund. But, chances are good that you'll be thrilled with this name change service: we found plenty of customers who raved about the lightning-fast customer service response (30 minutes or less!). Comparing that with rival services that often took days (...or weeks...or more!) to return an answer, NewlyNamed comes out way ahead.
Convenient And Affordable
Although you might be able to find a name change service for a little less money than NewlyNamed, you probably won't find one that offers the same attention to clients. You've got enough on your plate without having to chase down answers - or go searching for envelopes and stamps! NewlyNamed gives you all the help and convenience you need at an affordable price. This is one of our favorite choices in name change services.
Miss Now Mrs is one of the original name change services for brides, with over a decade in the industry and a solid "A+" rating from the Better Business Bureau. This company estimates that you will spend at least 13 hours searching for the right state and federal forms and figuring out how, where and when to file them - or you can use their affordably-priced service and save yourself the trouble!
Scan Your Driver's License
One of the most novel features offered by this name change service is the ability to scan your driver's license and your husband's into the Miss Now Mrs app. You then tap on the answers to 15 questions, purchase your package, and you're good to go! You can even give it a try for free - no credit card needed. But, if you prefer not to download one more app on your phone, you can complete the process online too.
2 Options To Choose From
Miss Now Mrs gives you two paid options to choose from:
What You'll Get
Both tiers of service give you access to the most commonly-needed documents, like voter registration and USPS, along with notification letters for over 16 million companies and service providers. You also get all of the help you need from their "name change experts" if you come across questions you don't know how to answer or hit any snags with the process.
Lots Of Compliments
Users of this name change service give it a lot of compliments. From the ease of getting everything filled out online - 30 minutes or less, for most people - to the convenience of being able to get pre-addressed and stamped envelopes, they say it's well worth the money to have the entire process so streamlined.
Limited To Brides
The only reason Miss Now Mrs doesn't earn our highest ranking is because the service is limited strictly to new brides changing their last name. The top picks in the industry have options for people needing name change help after a divorce, couples wanting to hyphenate their last names, or who fall in the "Mr Now Mr" category. We wondered if that might have something to do with the fact that the site copyright was 2014 - and we think maybe Miss Now Mrs could use a little bit of updating to be more current with the times.
Other than that, this name change service gives you plenty of convenience for one of the most well-priced, tech-savvy platforms we've found. While it's true you'll need to look elsewhere if you need to change your name for reasons outside of the traditional girl-meets-boy marriage situation, for the vast majority of people looking to change their name after the wedding, Miss Now Mrs is a great choice.
HitchSwitch is one of the newer name change services on the market, getting its start around 2013. More than 500,000 people have used this platform to save time and hassle when getting their names updated with government offices, businesses, and other services.
3 Name Change Packages
HitchSwitch offers three name change packages:
How Much Help Do You Need
As you can see, the only difference among the tiers of service is the amount of help you anticipate needing as you work through the process.
More Than You Might Think
With a name like HitchSwitch, you're probably thinking it can only be used for name changes after marriage. It's true that the majority of what you'll see featured and explained on the site is focused on that kind of name change. However, you can use this platform for other types of name changes (such as divorce and other situations). You'll follow a slightly different set of instructions, and you'll find those in the HitchSwitch FAQ under "Other Types of Name Change?" For example, instead of entering the date of your marriage certificate, you'll enter the date that your name change order was registered with the court.
Mixed Customer Reviews
What kind of feedback does HitchSwitch have from people who've used the service? On the one hand, the Better Business Bureau gives the company a perfect "A+" rating, as well as accreditation. However, in reading through client comments, we found several that described the platinum level of service as "not worth it" - confirming our thought that you can get concierge-tier attention for less money with several other name change services. Some users said they had a very hard time getting a response from HitchSwitch representatives, leaving them hanging and with their name still unchanged with many of their accounts.
Outdated Customer Testimonials
We also weren't impressed by the outdated customer testimonials on the HitchSwitch site. Even though it looks like a live feed from various social media channels, most of the posts were a year old or more. It left us wondering if this service is on its way out or has fallen behind other name change services in terms of popularity.
Better Choices Elsewhere
At the end of the day, HitchSwitch is a decent option for name change services, especially if you feel comfortable with the process and don't think you'll need much hand-holding from their customer service team. But, there are other options that give you more for your money - and seem to be staying more up-to-date as well.
Name Change Kit has been around for over 20 years, helping people change their names for a variety of reasons. You'll find their services to be relatively low-tech compared with some of the providers in our review.
Several Name Change Packages
Unlike services that primarily cater to newly-married women who want to take on their husband's last name, Name Change Kit offers several different packages for various circumstances:
Print Out The Forms And Fill Them Out By Hand
No matter which one you choose, it's up to you to fill in the forms. Name Change Kit doesn't give you a preview of their documents or what the process looks like - so it's hard to say whether you'll be able to fill out any of the information online before you print them out for yourself (like we said, low-tech here).
Lack Of Customer Feedback
In its listing under Name Change Kit's parent company, KitBiz, the Better Business Bureau gives this service an "A+" rating. There were no complaints or reviews filed there, and only a handful of testimonials on the Name Change Kit site itself. In other words, the BBB rating is a good indicator that this service isn't a scam, but the lack of buzz about this service literally everywhere else is disappointing.
Yes, you'll get all of the forms you need for your name change, but there are other services out there that add some higher-tech features for added speed and convenience (like being able to fill out all of your information online and print out your documents with those details prepopulated).
Trusted Service But There Are Easier Choices
We appreciate that Name Change Kit is competitively priced, and that they have packages that are appropriate for a wide range of reasons (and not just for brides taking on their grooms' last name). This is a trustworthy resource for your name change needs, but you might prefer a service with a few more bells and whistles for extra convenience and time savings.
Find Legal Forms has been in business for over two decades, providing easy access to legal documents for a variety of needs. All of their forms are attorney-prepared and kept up to date with respect to legal requirements in all 50 states. In fact, the service guarantees that your name change forms will be valid no matter where you live, and you've got a 60-day money-back guarantee for additional peace of mind.
Most Basic Service
Of all the name change services in our review, Find Legal Forms is the most basic. For a one-time fee ranging from $12.95 to $19.95, depending on which type of name change you need, you'll get access to an instant download of documents. These documents may include the following:
4 Types Of Name Change Services
There are only four kinds of name change forms on this site: Bride Name Change, Divorce Name Change, Name Affidavits, and general Name Change. We didn't see any forms for changing the name of a minor. All of the forms provided on this site let you sign online at no extra charge.
Good Overall Reputation
Find Legal Forms has a decent overall reputation, shown by an "A+" rating from the Better Business Bureau. However, there was only one review on the site for their name change kits, so it's hard to draw any conclusions about the effectiveness of the forms (especially since the user said they hadn't yet submitted the forms they purchased).
Least Amount Of Customer Support
However, this service also offers the least amount of customer support. If you have any questions about your name change documents, you'll have to submit your inquiry through Find Legal Forms' online contact page. There's no toll-free number, and apparently no other live assistance. Plus, compared with other name change services that walk you through the entire process online with a series of questions to answer, Find Legal Forms is decidedly "old school" - to the point of being outdated, quite frankly. For just a few dollars more, you can get a much more advanced package that includes the convenience of having your documents pre-filled when they come to you for signing.
Look For Something More
While there's nothing bad about using Find Legal Forms as your name change service, there isn't much to rave about either. We recommend that you consider the more robust options out there, to make the most of your time and money with a service that has more to offer.
If you're feeling a little overwhelmed, you're not alone! It's estimated that the average person spends more than 10 hours just doing the research to determine where they need to have their name officially changed, not to mention the time it takes to fill out the paperwork and get it submitted to each corresponding governmental department or company.
Fortunately, there are name change services that eliminate both the guesswork and the hassle. These services usually ask you a few basic questions and walk you through the entire process in just a matter of minutes, and many of them even take care of addressing and stamping the envelopes you'll need after you sign the paperwork. While some providers cost more than others, you're still getting a great deal if you consider how much your time is worth.
Not all name change services offer the same benefits, however. When deciding which one to use, keep the following criteria in mind:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Name Change services available today. We hope this information helps you work your way through the process of legally changing your name quickly and affordably!
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