Motorists must complete an Alabama drivers license name change whenever they change their name due to marriage, divorce or court order. However, the DMV name change process varies slightly depending on the reason for the name change. Additionally, when drivers need to modify their names on their licenses, they must provide the state with legal documentation supporting the name change. The necessary documents will also vary depending on the reason for the change of name.

When vehicle owners need to change name on driving licenses, they may only do so in person. A license is a state-issued identification document, and Alabama will confirm that the name change request is legal and valid. As such, there are steps that residents must take prior to visiting a state agency to request the modification. To learn more about how to change name on drivers license cards in Alabama, review the information below.

Instances Where You Must Change Your Name on Your Alabama Drivers License

Vehicle owners must apply for a change of name on driving license cards if they change their name due to marriage, divorce, legal separation, adoption or after filing a name change action with the court. Motorists must change the name on their AL driving license whenever they complete a legal name change for reasons such as these. Since a drivers license is used for identification purposes, it must accurately represent the cardholder’s legal name.

Note: If after a divorce you wish to claim your maiden name on your drivers license, then the divorce papers must state that you plan to do so.

Alabama Drivers License Name Change Time Limits

To change the name on a driver license, motorists must update their name with the Social Security Administration (SSA) and local driver licensing office under the state Law Enforcement Agency (ALEA) as soon as possible after the legal name change takes place. Failure to apply for a DMV name change may result in citations from law enforcement officials and delays in receiving registration renewal notices and other motor vehicle-related documents.

However, vehicle owners can only apply for a driving license name change in Alabama after updating their name with the SSA. When changing name on drivers license cards, motorists must provide the licensing office with proof of completing a name change through the SSA, in addition to other documentation supporting the name change. Remember, you must wait 24 hours to begin the process of changing your name on driving license and other motor vehicle documents after changing your name with the SSA.

How to Change Your Name With the Social Security Administration

To complete a name change on drivers license cards, residents must change their name with the SSA and obtain a new Social Security card. To change your name with the SSA, you must visit a local Social Security office to submit all application materials in person or you may mail all documentation to your local Social Security facility. To update your information with the SSA before requesting a drivers license name change, you must use blue or black ink to complete an application for Social Security card and submit it along with proof of your identity and age, marriage document, divorce decree or a court order approving the name change. Additionally, you must submit evidence of U.S. citizenship or immigration status.

When changing your name with the SSA, you must submit proof of age, identity, U.S. citizenship and immigration status. Proof of identity includes a valid Alabama drivers license, non-driver identification card or a U.S. passport. Proof of age includes a hospital birth record, adoption decree, passport or religious record (establishing your birth date). Evidence of U.S. citizenship includes a birth certificate, passport, Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of Citizenship. Evidence of immigration status includes a document issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

How to Change Your Name on Your Drivers License in Person

Vehicle owners cannot apply for an online driver license name change in the state of Alabama or request a DMV name change by mail. Instead, drivers must change the name on a driver license in person at any participating location, including ALEA driver license offices, local licensing branches or county probate offices. When changing the name on an AL driving license, drivers must provide the licensing office with the following documents:

  • Proof of the legal name change, including an original or certified marriage certificate, divorce decree, legal name change document or court order
  • Proof of completing the name change with the SSA
  • Payment for requesting a duplicate license
  • A state drivers license or photo identification
  • A birth certificate

However, the process of completing a drivers license name change varies slightly for same-sex couples since state law does not recognize same-sex marriage licenses for driving license name change purposes. Same-sex couples who wish to apply for a name change on drivers licenses must petition the Judge of Probate to do so, rather than submitting legal proof of the name change via a marriage certificate. When petitioning the Judge of Probate, claimants must visit a county probate office to complete the process in person.

Petitioners often need to submit a certified copy of their birth certificate, a photo identification, proof of county residency, a Social Security card and payment for the filing fee. You may also need to submit two proofs of county residency. Valid proof of residency includes a utility bill, mortgage, deed, voter registration or tax card.

Alabama DMV Name Change Fees

When changing your name in Alabama, you must update the name on your driver license and pay a duplicate license fee.

The cost of completing a drivers license name change and obtaining a duplicate license is the same as receiving a replacement drivers license, which is nominal. There is no charge to apply for a new Social Security card.

Last updated on Tuesday, March 5 2019.

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