Does My Name Change Impact Estate Planning Documents?

People’s names often change due to marriage, divorce or a court order. When family names change this can become problematic for any legal documents that have the previous name. For example, consider a daughter who was named as a power of attorney agent or health care representative by a family member several years ago. If she gets married and changes her name, this can cause delays and unnecessary difficulty should that agent be called upon to act.

Plenty of documents need to be updated when your name changes, including insurance policies, passports, driver’s licenses and more but health care powers of attorney and beneficiary forms should also be updated. Other identifiers can also be helpful, such as a middle initial or the use of the acronym aka. This is when a person’s name is different for a reason, such as the name they go by being different from their legal name.

Another acronym known as “now known as” or n/k/a might also be used if a person’s name has changed completely. Many estate planning attorneys would recommend that you update the names to the new documents, especially if there are people in the family who have similar names.

If you recently got married and need to discuss your overall estate plans as well as changing your name on any documents, now is a good time to update your materials across the board.

Schedule a consultation with an experienced estate planning lawyer in Pasadena to learn more about how to protect your interests and what other documents should be revisited after getting married.



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