When you legally change your name, there are tax consequences you need to address – especially at tax time. Maybe you got married, are going back to your former name after a divorce or adopted a child who’s taking your family name. Whatever, the IRS wants you to remember these important things:
- Report the change to the Social Security Administration ASAP. When you file your taxes, the IRS checks with the SSA to make sure your name and Social Security number on the forms match. If your return doesn’t match SSA records, it could delay the processing of your return and potentially delay any refund you’re owed.
- Name change due to adoption. If your child has a Social Security number, be sure to report this name change to the SSA as well. If your child does not have a Social Security number, you can use a temporary Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number on their tax return. Apply for an ATIN by filing Form W-7A, Application for Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U.S. Adoptions, with the IRS.
- Getting a new Social Security card. After you have changed your name, you should file Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card, to receive a new card with your new name. This form is available on SSA.gov or by calling (800) 772-1213.