If you have changed your name, you need to let the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) know as soon as possible to ensure that your tax files reflect your new name accurately. The process for advising the CRA of a name change is different depending on whether the change was only to your first name or your last name – or if you have changed both your first name and your last name.
A Change in Your First Name or Last Name Only
A change to a taxpayer’s last name is fairly common, especially for women who get married in provinces other than Quebec. Changes to a first name are also fairly common and happen for a variety of reasons. Advising the CRA of a change to your first name or your last name is a straightforward process.
The CRA does not accept changes of name by email or online, not even in the My Account platform.
If you are only changing your first name or last name, you need to call 1-800-959-8281 to advise the CRA of your name change.
- You will need to identify yourself on the phone, so be sure to have your Social Insurance number, full address and latest tax return handy. (You will likely be asked to provide figures from certain line numbers of your tax return for verification purposes, quite often you will be asked for Line 15000 – Total Income).
You can also change your name by mail or fax. You must provide documentation if you have already changed your name. Write a letter with the following:
- an original or certified true copy of one of the following documents:
- a name change certificate from a provincial/territorial vital statistics department
- a court order issued under an act on change of name
- your old and new names
- your social insurance number
- your signature
Send your letter by mail or fax to your tax centre. See this link to find your tax centre.
A Change in Both Your First Name and Your Last Name
- If you changed both your first name and your last name, you need to provide the CRA with additional information. You must advise the CRA of such a change in writing.
- You need to put together a package containing either a name change certificate from a provincial or territorial vital statistics department or a court order issued under an act on change of name to your tax centre.
Changing your name with the CRA doesn’t change your name with all branches of the government. If you want other departments or organizations informed, such as Service Canada or Provincial Agencies, you must contact them directly.
Advising the CRA of a name change does not automatically update your marital status.
If you need to update this as well, you can do one of the following:
- Use Form RC65, Marital Status Change.
- You can update your marital status online using the CRA’s My Account system.
You can find more information in this CRA link: Update your CRA information: Change your name.