Plainfield, NJ asked in Social Security, Tax Law and Gov & Administrative Law for New Jersey

Q: Can I keep my maiden name on W-2 if my name on passport and SSA has changed

I have 2 last names as I recently added my husband’s last name to mine . So now my last name is composed of 2 last nabes without hyphen. Can I continue to use my maiden name first last name at work and hence on W-2? What’s the way to retain maiden name professionally?

1 Lawyer Answer
James L. Arrasmith
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  • Tax Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA

A: If your name has legally changed and is updated on your passport and with the Social Security Administration (SSA), it is generally recommended to update your name at work to ensure consistency across all official documents and systems. This includes having your new name reflected on your W-2 form, as the IRS matches this information with the SSA records.

However, professionally, you may choose to retain your maiden name for work-related matters, such as email addresses, business cards, and within your professional network. It’s important to communicate this preference to your HR department to understand how it can be accommodated alongside legal requirements. They can guide you on the company's policy and the potential impact on official documents like your W-2.

To retain your maiden name professionally while ensuring legal compliance, you might need to use your legal name for official documentation and tax purposes but continue using your maiden name in day-to-day professional interactions. Ensure that HR is aware of your situation so they can assist in maintaining consistency where necessary and advise on any possible implications.

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