Acceptable documents for proof of name change

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Wisconsin DMV issues REAL ID compliant products (marked with a µ) in accordance with the federal Real ID Act of 2005. If you plan to fly within the U.S., visit a military base or other federal buildings, the Department of Homeland Security will require identification that is REAL ID compliant (or show another acceptable form of identification, such as a passport) beginning May 7, 2025, the new deadline for this federal requirement. Don’t get left behind without a REAL ID.

If your name is different than what’s on your birth certificate, proof of name change is needed for each name change.*

If you have legally changed your name, you need to change your name with the Social Security Administration and wait 48 hours before going to a DMV customer service center. When you go to a DMV customer service center to change your name on your driver license or identification card, you will be required to show proof of your name change.

The following are acceptable documents to show proof of your name change:

  • Certified marriage certificate
  • Certified record of divorce
  • Certified court order
  • Valid unexpired U.S. Passport issued in your current name
  • * Note to REAL ID driver license and ID card applicants:
    • If you have a valid, unexpired U.S. Passport in your current name, you will not need to bring in additional documentation regarding past name changes.
    • If you don’t have a valid, unexpired U.S. Passport in your current name, you will need to provide documents to support each name change from birth to the present date.

The interactive driver licensing guide is a helpful tool for those looking for information on driver licensing, commercial driver licensing or Identification (ID card) requirements. The guide will provide you with a checklist of requirements, and allow you to pre-fill any required application(s). Depending on your eligibility you may also be able to use the guide to electronically submit your application and schedule an appointment with the DMV for expedited service.

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