To many, the wedding ceremony and marriage symbolizes the beginning of a new family life together. And the biggest symbol of family life is changing the surname to a common one. If you want to keep your surname after the wedding, you don’t have to think about anything because you will automatically keep the name you already have. But if you and your partner want to have common surnames, there are a couple of things that are good to keep in mind.
Previously, you could change your surname through the marriage officiant, but nowadays they’re not allowed to accept name-change applications. If you want to change your name, you have to send an application directly to the Swedish Tax Agency instead. Your partner doesn’t have to approve your application if you change to your partner’s surname.
Everything you need to know before the name change
You can choose to have one common surname. You can also choose to have a double surnames, which is when you take on a new surnamn based on your and your partner’s current names. Whether you want hyphens between the surnames is entirely up to you. If one of you already has a double surname, only one of the surnames can be included in the newly formed name. However, you can change to your partner’s double surname if you wish.
You can apply to change your surname both before the wedding and during the marriage. You can also change your surname several times during your marriage if you were to regret anything. You can even change to your partner’s last name even if your partner got that name in a previous marriage. When the Swedish Tax Agency approves the name change, you’ll receive an extract from their register from them. There you can see, among other things, when the name was changed and how it’s spelled. That way, you can ensure that everything is correct.
Some name changes cost money and can amount upto a couple of thousand Swedish crowns. But changing to your partner’s name won’t cost you anything. When you have changed your surname, the Tax Agency sends the new information to most authorities and companies. However, you have to make sure youtself to renew your ID, passport and notify everyone in your network, both friends, colleagues and others, that you have changed your name.
Check the waiting time for new passports when changing your surname
Remember that if you intend to go on a honeymoon trip, it’s important that you book the trip in the name that appears in your passport. Many people miss this, often because they’re used to making reservations in their old name. And that only leads to unnecessary costs and stress.
You cannot change the name on your passport before the Swedish Tax Agency has approved the name change. However, in connection to your wedding, you can apply to change your surname and at the same time, book a trip in your old surname, as long as you have a valid passport in that name. Processing times can be long with both the Swedish Tax Agency, who registers the name change, and the Swedish police, who issues the new passport. So it’s often easier to book a honeymoon in your old name and apply for a new passport when you’re back home. Alternatively, you can apply to change your surname after the honeymoon instead.