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Legal Name for Passport Application
Old 12-16-2014, 03:33 PM   #1
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Legal Name for Passport Application

When applying for a passport what should be used as the legal name? The name from the birth certificate? Even when that doesn't have a middle name? But when I sign stuff, I've been signing (for many years) using my confirmation name as my middle name.
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:37 PM   #2
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You should use your legal name as noted on your birth certificate. Suspect you will have a problem getting a passport with a name that doesn't coincide.
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:43 PM   #3
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I've refused to use never used the legal name my parents were crazy enough to give me anywhere. Not on my driver's license, passport, not on any legal document. Not anywhere. Never had a problem.
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:50 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by robertf57 View Post
You should use your legal name as noted on your birth certificate. Suspect you will have a problem getting a passport with a name that doesn't coincide.
I didn't like having a confirmation/added middle name when I was younger, and don't like one even more.

I envy those who smartly just sign stuff and leave the middle name off, one less thing make things confusing.

Here's what I found about my name of passport application question? But of course, my driver's liscense includes my middle name but the birth certificate does not

Quote:
Do I Need to Use my Middle Name on the Passport Application?

It “should” match what is on your birth certificate and your state issued ID (Drivers License) – however I have personally seen exceptions to this rule. YMMV – just don’t hold me to it if it doesn’t work out for you. If you try to leave your middle name off and are asked to resubmit your application, you will just need to resubmit the application without any additional cost.
Rules for Passports and Middle Names - What to know for Travel Reservations and Security Regulations | Passport Info Guide
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Old 12-16-2014, 05:03 PM   #5
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I have a middle name that is just a single letter (Not an initial for a name) and that alone casued my some problem in my passport application. As I noted before, if it matched your birth certificate, you shouldn't have a problem; it it doesn't... well no guarantees!
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Legal Name for Passport Application
Old 12-17-2014, 10:35 AM   #6
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Legal Name for Passport Application

I'm glad you brought this up as I am about to apply by mail to renew an expired passport ( travel.state.gov ).

My drivers license has an initial for my middle name, while my birth certificate and expired passport have the full middle name. Which to put on the renewal application? I called the service number listed at the above website.

The rep told me to use the name as it appears on my prior passport.
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Old 12-17-2014, 12:33 PM   #7
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Middle Initial

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Originally Posted by steelyman View Post
...
My drivers license has an initial for my middle name, while my birth certificate has the full middle name. Which to put on the renewal application?

The rep told me to use the name as it appears on my prior passport.
This is my situation as well. I have renewed several times using only my middle initial with no issues. As long as you have your old passport, I would not expect any issues.

I hope to never lose possession of my passport again; the US government takes a very dim view of anyone not taking good care of that particular document.
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Old 12-17-2014, 02:05 PM   #8
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My dad used a first and middle name since birth that wasn't even remotely the names on his birth certificate. (not the real names but for example: "Richard James" vs "Walter Michael") It wasn't even the name of a relative, friend or anyone anybody knew.

How that came about nobody knows, but his drivers license, all legal documents (never had a passport), business incorporation and death certificate were under a name that no one (even his mother) knew where it came from. Apparently as a baby then just started calling him that and it took.

Back then, around here you could get a drivers license without ID and in fact, my grand-dad just brought Dad's license home for him via a 'connection' at the RMV.
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Old 12-17-2014, 03:30 PM   #9
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I go by my middle name, maiden name and married name. My purse was stolen a couple of years ago and I had to go get a new social security card and driver's license. They both insisted that since 9-11, they had to match my birth certificate which has a first name that I have never used in my life. So now they all read First name, Maiden name, Married Name. I have to fly with that same name. So the name I go by no longer exists for those documents, since it is a middle name. Has anyone else run into this? I'm assuming it will be the same for a passport, although I don't have one.
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Old 12-19-2014, 08:02 PM   #10
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My legal last name is my maiden name plus my married name (not hyphenated), but my passport shows my maiden name as my middle name.


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Old 02-04-2015, 10:30 PM   #11
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Question not about names, but about occupation when applying for/renewing a passport...

So, if you are retired and applying, then what goes in the occupation area? a) Retired? or b) your former occupation and former employer? or c) both with (retired) in parenthesis?
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Old 02-04-2015, 10:48 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by easysurfer View Post
Question not about names, but about occupation when applying for/renewing a passport...

So, if you are retired and applying, then what goes in the occupation area? a) Retired? or b) your former occupation and former employer? or c) both with (retired) in parenthesis?

I just mailed the form to renew, wrote "Retired" and left the other one blank.

Otherwise, it would seem to me to be like answering a question about marital status with "Divorced (formerly married)". The first answer makes it clear.
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Old 02-04-2015, 10:54 PM   #13
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I only put retired on my passport when I sent in my renewal and had no problems getting a new passport.
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Old 02-05-2015, 07:07 AM   #14
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I would use Retired, just like I do on my tax return.
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Old 02-05-2015, 10:32 AM   #15
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Great points. I was leaning towards "occupation (retired)" but see how "retired" (just like taxes) should work. Thanks.
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Old 02-05-2015, 10:37 AM   #16
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I don't think the State Department cares very much unless one's profession is something like nuclear bomb specialist, bio-warfare consultant, or cable company executive.
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Legal Name for Passport Application
Old 02-05-2015, 10:51 AM   #17
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Legal Name for Passport Application

easysurfer's post and a few recent ones from other people about starting businesses in retirement made me think of a situation (not mine) where you might put your vocation rather than retired.

For example, even after leaving a job, one might put "Architect" for occupation (if that's what you do) and "Self-employed" in the employer slot.

The "xxx (ret.)" convention is something I usually see in different contexts than a US passport renewal form.

They should redo that form (easy to miss the second page).
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Old 02-05-2015, 02:40 PM   #18
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Don't forget: the occupation is not on the passport itself -- only the application/renewal form.
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Old 02-05-2015, 06:49 PM   #19
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They didn't care for Spy, or Unemployed Spy, so now I just stick with Retired.
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Old 02-06-2015, 12:13 PM   #20
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Don't forget: the occupation is not on the passport itself -- only the application/renewal form.
I wonder now if the occupation question goes back from the days of the folks coming to America looking for a better life, a way of life. Just wondering.
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