It's totally up to you what you do with your name through/after marriage. Both or either party to the marriage can change their name! As with the general theme of getting married in Australia, you can pretty much do what you want! YAY!!
C R A Z Y FACT
52% of Americans surveyed believe that it should be legally mandated for women to change their name after marriage! How outrageous is that. AND, 72% said "of course it should happen". THAT IS CRAZY! In Australia, luckily it is not mandated & you have a lot of freedom as to how you go about it & what you do with your name after you are married!
Changing your name when you get married
This is not a formal name change process. You will not be issued a new birth certificate as you would if you were formally changing your name
You can still use your maiden whenever you want; many people will flip back & forth between the two names. You can use them as you wish. For example, you may use your married name in social circles but your maiden name for professional purposes
You can change your personal documentation (passport & drivers licence) to your married surname but not your birth certificate.
Whatever you wish -Your options with name change after marriage
1 - Keep your existing name
2 - Adopt your spouse's family name
3 - Combine both your own family name with your spouse's family name (with or without hyphens) *Unfortunately you just can't make up an entirely new name!
I N T E R E S T I N G FACT & Tip
Having your celebrant pronounce you as "Mr & Mrs Smith" at the end of the ceremony does not actually mean anything. So for celebratory purposes, you could choose to be pronounced with the same last name, but not actually ever change your name.
You can change your name after you get married at anytime AFTER your marriage has been registered and you have received your official certificate of marriage. There is no "statute of limitations" i.e. you can even decide to change your name 10 years after being married.
Have any questions or concerns about changing your name when you get married? Get in touch and I can explain everything in more detail & guide you through the process.
Not sure what to do about your name? Have a chat to me and I will ask you a few important questions to help you make a decision.