Fortunately, most of the changes to other relevant documents can be done by faxing or emailing the certified copies of your marriage certificate to the various institutions, so it is not likely that you will need to stand in queues for hours on end, as many envision. For the first few months (at least), keep a Photostatted copy of your marriage certificate in your purse so that your details can be changed if and when required. Remember to inform your employer of your name change and have all of your tax forms, pension funds and medical aid details changed. Grooms–to-be that decide to change their surname to reflect that of their new wives’ will usually need to get court papers for this. You will also need to change your name with your local post office, voting registrar, doctor, lawyer, and so on.
Sign-up and receive Specials, Competitions, Professional Advice, Wedding Ideas and so much more to make planning your wedding just that much easier! As with saving your top tier, changing your last name is a wedding tradition thats almost always expected but not always practiced. If you are on the fence about whether to change your last name, take some time to think about your name, your identity, your family, and what’s important to you.
Question: I have a question regarding Muslims changing their entire name after coming into the faith of Islam. Islam does not consider it an obligation for any new convert to Islam whose mother tongue is not Arabic to change it to an Arabic name or other language.
Assallamu Alaikum, I became Muslim in June 2011, and just wanted to know that even if it is not mandated to change your name, can you do this as a symbol of such a total life change? As a convert of 10+ years myself, I can tell you that part of the conversion process is the eventually recognition that you are the same person that you were before and that Islam is a natural part of life. When I converted to Islam, I did not embrace Arabism, neither did I reject my parents, close friends nor the teachers and other adults in the community who helped raise me and make me who I am. The Lamppost Education Initiative (LEI) offers expert analysis of current events which impact Muslims in the West as well as offerings in the classical Islamic disciplines in written, published, and audio-visual formats. About 90% of brides today give up their maiden names after getting married, whether out of respect for tradition, a desire for cohesiveness or even to avoid having to explain family relationships, especially after children enter the picture. But there’s no doubt brides are opting to use their maiden names – as more than just a password hint for online accounts – these days. But bureaucratic and similarly pragmatic reasons can also sway women in the other direction.
If such considerations seem thoroughly modern, they actually date back to the 1850s in America.
Stone didn’t insist on using her maiden name immediately upon tying the knot, however, referring to herself as “Lucy Stone Blackwell” in her wedding announcements. It is estimated that just 8 percent of American women will keep their last names after marriage. While the decision to change your last name after marriage is a personal choice that every woman (and man) must make, there are societal pressures that may influence couples one way or another.
More than 60 percent of people polled agreed that women should take their husbands' last names after marriage, while less than half said a man should be allowed to take his wife's last name.
Click through the slideshow to see how the results broke down based on sex, race and political affiliation. Of all respondents surveyed, 61 percent said a woman should take her husband's last name after marriage.
Well, I did change my name (and on Facebook first, the real authority, or maybe just the one that didn't require a 2 hour wait). I got to thinking about why I wasn’t feeling that bad and why it seemed so easy to take on this new identity.


My first thought is, although I do love my former last name and the family I came from, my immediate family members all have different names. Changing your last name after getting married can be daunting, and even a newlywed’s happy glow is no match against long lines at the DMV. If you’ve got a number of name change notifications to send out, the service could be a lifesaver, helping to remind you about items you may have overlooked, like your voter registration, and making the forms available in a single location. It is best to contact your lawyer and ask him or her about what protocol you will need to follow as this differs for men from country to country. This seems to be a hot topic at the moment and I figured I would put in a couple thoughts while the ball was already quickly rolling through our generation. A Harvard study found that women with college degrees were 2 – 4 times more likely to retain their last name as compared with women without college degrees.
Whatever the reason is, its a personal choice thats yours to make and should make you happy.
Even those that are second, third generation Muslims when their parents became Muslim they changed their last names. Rather, it is only highly recommended for one to do so when the meaning of one’s name is something offensive or overly presumptuous in sound, like one indicating that one is pure or the like.
Rather, their last names were connected to tribal affiliations or titles attaching them to certain tribal or regional sectors, like Qurashi, Khazraji, Makki, etc. I feel as though I want to share with everyone what for me is the most wonderful thing that happened to me. But I do think that there is something to converts adopting new identities as a way of breaking with our past. African-Americans, we have our own issues with names, but until we can be recognized as legitimate Muslims with names like Keith, Crystal and Michael, Islam is always going to be viewed as a foreign religion.
So with all due respect, I generally advise new converts not to change their names unless they fall within the above clarifications Ustadh Abdullah gave in the original answer. Our commitment is to establishing an authoritative voice for American Muslim scholarship reflective of the historical tradition and contextualizes Islam in light of the challenges and cultural particularities of Western societies as was the case in all societies where Islam spread historically.
As more women postpone marriage until after their early 20s, many feel reluctant to give up the identities, both personal and professional, that their names represent. Hyphenating has become a popular alternative, though many parents are reluctant to then saddle their children with clunky last names that bust out of application form boxes. No word in the history books, though, about whether she chose a monogram or floral motif to adorn her paper stock.
Then, take part in our reader polls below to add your thoughts to the debate and compare your answers to our national poll. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov's nationally representative opinion polling. It was also a topic that my friends and I discussed together as each of us transformed from a bride to a wife. The site has researched all of the legal requirements in each state to provide users the most up to date forms and filing instructions all in one place. If you’d rather not enter certain information, you can always hand write it on the forms instead.
Try to change any and all documents to reflect your new surname within these first few months so that there are no complications further on down the line. You will also need new business cards, email signatures, a name badge and a new plaque on your door or desk (if applicable). It seems that around the world for as long as marriage has existed the bride is expected to replace her last name with the last name of her husband.


Why is it more likely or more socially accepted that a women with advanced education will keep her last name? I understood that to change your first name is okay, but to change your last name is not permissible.
During the Prophet Muhammad’s (saws) time, he changed the names of a number of women whose names were too pious sounding, like the name Barra (ultra-pious). This, I think stems from a number of things, but something that I suspect is unique to the contemporary Western mindset.
But among the many items on a bride’s checklist is one decision that has lifelong implications (besides picking the lucky guy): whether to change her last name. Both bride and groom can keep their original names, but having to repeatedly explain “Yes, John Roberts is really my husband, even though I’m Emily Jones” can make a person crazy.
The poll used a sample selected from YouGov's opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. My mom has the same last name as her parents and one brother, but my other two uncles have a separate last name. More than 15 different items, from your passport to your driver’s license to even your insurance coverage, can be updated simultaneously with their $29.95 package. In South Africa, the Department of Home Affairs will take between three and four months to issue a computerised marriage certificate to women from the time of their actual wedding ceremony.
My guess… thousands of years of gender politics, inequalities, and repetitive tradition have played havoc on our perception of personal choice. I have two children whom now carry my last name now, and I am bothered that I may have made a mistake in giving them my last name. I believe that we assume that there is something anit-Islamic about our past, when that simply is not the case.
In the meantime, your handwritten certificate is usually acceptable to use when applying for your new Identity Book and your passport.
There is usually a specific name change form that you will need to complete, so ask for this.
The Companions, as Ustadh Abullah said, only changed their names when they implied something pretentious or idolatrous. Factors considered include age, race, gender, education, employment, income, marital status, number of children, voter registration, time and location of Internet access, interest in politics, religion and church attendance. It is, therefore, wise to make copies of your handwritten marriage certificate and your passport and ID book with your maiden name and get them certified by the police. This will ensure that you always have some proof of your maiden and married surnames in the event of losing the originals. This same trend can be detected in the European and other traditions (although I plan to exhaust more research on the matter) such that last names that are familiar today originate in some sort of occupation, tribal affiliation, or regional ascription. Keep at least one copy of each at a trusted friend or family member’s home in case of fire or flood damaging all of your copies. So, in the end, you have not done anything inappropriate by giving your children your last name unless they are not biologically yours.



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