About Changing Your Name on Your Pennsylvania Registration
Learning how to change name on car registration in Pennsylvania is one of the first steps you must take if you own and operate a motor vehicle and choose to change your legal name. The most common reasons for a legal name change include marriage, divorce, court order or any other major life event.
Under state law, you must change car registration information with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) whenever your legal name and permanent address change.
To complete the process, you must submit your request by mailing an application directly to PennDOT’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles in Harrisburg. However, you must first change your name through the Social Security Administration (SSA) and correct the name on your Pennsylvania driver’s license. To learn more about the steps you must take to change the name on your vehicle registration credentials, review the information below.
When to Change Name on Car Registration in Pennsylvania
You must change name on car registration and titling credentials whenever you change your legal name due to marriage, divorce, court order, adoption or a pending divorce. If your divorce is pending when you change the name on your Pennsylvania driver’s license and registration credentials, you must provide PennDOT with a written notice of the pending change. Additionally, you must include a copy of your updated driver’s license. When you change vehicle registration information, you do not need to provide PennDOT with legal proof of the name change, such as a marriage certificate or divorce decree.
When you update your Pennsylvania driver’s license, however, you must provide PennDOT with certified proof of the name change, such as a copy of the court order or a marriage certificate.
Completing a Name Change on Car Registration in Pennsylvania
Before changing name on car registration credentials, you must notify the SSA of your new name and update the information on your Pennsylvania driver’s license. To update the information on your driver’s license, you must visit a Driver License Center to complete the process in person. Need more information on how to complete this task? Download our free guide. Once this step is complete, you can begin the process to change the name on your car registration.
To apply for a Pennsylvania DMV name change after marriage, divorce or court order, you must fill out an application. You may need to provide the following information, depending on whether you wish to obtain a replacement registration card only, or a duplicate registration card and certificate of title:
- A reason for your PennDOT name change
- A copy of your corrected driver’s license or state-issued identification card
- Information about the registered vehicle, such as its license plate number and title number
- Your current and former last name
- A written signature and self-certification
As part of your name change checklist, you must remember to enclose payment for the applicable fee if you wish to obtain a replacement registration card and title certificate. If you are only getting a replacement registration card but not a duplicate certificate of title, there is no charge.