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Social security 1, penndot 0

Got our social security cards changed to the new last names today. It was a breeze. Short line, and even though we brought all the required supporting documents, they really didn’t check them. Pretty much just looked at the marriage license and that was it. New cards to arrive in a couple of weeks.

The clerk at social security volunteered that we should take our social security confirmation letters to the DMV and they would change our drivers licenses. We guessed that this would not be the case, but we decided to play dumb and try.

Stop one was the counter to get your line number and application form. She asked why we were there, we told her, she said OK after looking at the marriage license, and gave us the forms and our numbers.

Damn, maybe this will be easy.

Not so fast.

At the window when my number was called, the gentleman told me that the marriage license and social security forms were not valid to change the name. As I suspected.

He went further, though, and told me that there was no way to make the change other than a court order. He elaborated by saying that no papers with our new name would be accepted to make the change.

According to him, the state needs to know why the change was made, not just get proof that it was, and only a court order would do that.

Having done some prior research, I was reasonably sure he was wrong, but since I didn’t have all the supporting docs anyway, I chose not to pursue it.

And indeed, when I got home I found the relevant statute:

67 § 85.1

It states that, in the absence of a court order, a social security card and two supporting items from a list would be sufficient.

I’ll be back, mr. badly-trained DMV worker, with my social security card, my passport, and some banking records.

And a copy of that statute.