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Report Name Change before You File Taxes

IRS Tax Tip 2014-08, February 6, 2014

Did you change your name last year? Did your dependent have a name change? If the answer to either question is yes, be sure to notify the Social Security Administration before you file your tax return with the IRS.

This is important because the name on your tax return must match SSA records. If they don’t, you’re likely to get a letter from the IRS about the mismatch. And if you expect a refund, this may delay when you’ll get it.

Be sure to contact SSA if:

  • You got married or divorced and you changed your name.

  • A dependent you claim had a name change. For example, this would apply if you adopted a child and that child’s last name changed.

File Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card, with the SSA to let them know about a name change. You can get the form on SSA.gov by calling 800-772-1213 or at an SSA office.

You can file Form SS-5 at an SSA office or by mail. Your new card will have the same SSN as before but will show your new name.

If you have an adopted child who does not have a SSN, use a temporary Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number on your tax form. You can apply for an ATIN by filing Form W-7A, Application for Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U.S. Adoptions, with the IRS. Get the form on IRS.gov or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).
 

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Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 06-Feb-2014