How to Change Your Name on Your Drivers License in West Virginia
A driver’s license name change in West Virginia is offered by the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) of the state’s Department of Transportation (DOT). If you have recently married or gotten divorced, or if you received a court order mandating a name change, you may obtain a WV DMV name change after updating your records with the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Below, you will find details on how to apply to change your name on a driving license, such as the mandatory documents and associated fee amounts.
Instances Where You Must Change Your Name on Your West Virginia Driver’s License
A West Virginia DMV name change is a common procedure for residents who have recently undergone certain life events. For instance, certain individuals want to change their legal names after getting married. Alternatively, name changes may be requested when couples get divorced. In West Virginia, changing your name on a driving license is often court-ordered as part of a divorce decree. In these instances, motorists wish to switch back to their maiden names, indicating that they are no longer married.
Furthermore, a name change on a driving license is sometimes associated with adoption proceedings, gender reassignment procedures or career motives.
West Virginia Driver’s License Name Change Time Limits
A West Virginia driver’s license name change must be requested within 20 days after an event that causes a change of name takes place, such as a marriage, divorce or court order. Failure to comply with these state laws can result in fees or even arrest, in the case that you are unable to prove your identity to a law enforcement officer.
Thus, it is imperative for you to request a change of name on a driving license, so that your credential displays your full legal name in the event that insurance or state records fail to match your proof of identification.
How to Change Your Name with the Social Security Administration
Before you change your name on a driving license in WV, you must request an official name change with the Social Security Administration (SSA). Overall, you can change your name on your SSA record for free by applying via mail or in person. Furthermore, because changing your name with the DMV requires similar documentation as changing your name with the SSA, you can prepare for both procedures consecutively.
In order to conduct a West Virginia DMV name change, you must prove a link between your past name, your amended name and your current identity. This procedure is also necessary when you request a name change at the SSA. To verify this transition, you may submit documents such as a certificate of marriage or a decree of divorce, supplemented by a current proof of identity. You must also complete the SSA’s name change application in order to receive a new Social Security card bearing your updated name.
Online Driver’s License Name Changes
At this time, West Virginia does not offer an online method for DMV name change services. Moreover, licensed motorists may not apply for a change of name via mail.
How to Change Your Name on Your Driver’s License in Person
You must apply for a driver’s license name change in West Virginia by visiting a local DMV office in person. During your visit, you must provide original copies of the documents that are required for this procedure. Common WV DMV name change requirements include the following paperwork:
- Official government-issued certificate of marriage, not a minister’s or souvenir rendition
- Original or certified copy of a certificate of birth, as proof of maiden name
- Original or certified copy of an amended certificate of birth, indicating your legal amended name
- Decree of divorce issued by a court of law, indicating your legal name change back to maiden name
- A valid passport that indicates your current legal name
- A document from the Social Security Administration indicating your legal name change
- Two documents proving your residency in West Virginia
When applying for a change of name on a driving license, make sure that you have documents that match the other paperwork you possess. For example, your Social Security card must match the name on your passport. If your documents are mismatched because they have not yet been updated, make sure that your current SSA record displays an acceptable legal link between your previous and your amended name.
In any case, be mindful that the DMV name change clerk must be able to verify a link across your documents in order to establish your identity.
West Virginia DMV Name Change Fees
The fees associated with changing your name on a driving license in West Virginia vary slightly. In general, these fees are calculated based on your age and the class of your license. However, the majority of applicants seeking a DMV name change in WV require a Class E driver’s license and are 18 years of age or older.
In addition, the state also requires a motor voter fee. Overall, the cost of a new license due to a name change is equal to the cost of a driver’s license replacement. Conversely, there are different costs associated with a license renewal.
- Frequently Asked Questions from WV.gov