The Internal Revenue Service is warning taxpayers to be sure to notify the Social Security Administration before they file their taxes if they have changed their own name or the name of one of their dependents has changed. Otherwise their tax refund could be delayed.

The IRS pointed out that this is important because the name on the tax return must match the SSA’s records. If the names don’t match, taxpayers are likely to receive a letter from the IRS about the mismatch. In addition, if they are expecting a tax refund, an unreported name change may delay the refund.

The IRS advised taxpayers to be sure to contact the SSA if they have married or divorced and changed their name, or if a dependent claimed by the taxpayer had a name change. For example, this would apply if the taxpayer adopted a child and that child’s last name changed.

Taxpayers should file Form SS-5, Application for a Social Security Card, with the SSA to let them know about a name change. The form is available on, or by calling (800) 772-1213 or visiting a local SSA office.

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

If the taxpayer’s has an adopted child who does not have a SSN, they should use a temporary Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number on their tax form. They can apply for an ATIN by filing Form W-7A, Application for Taxpayer Identification Number for Pending U.S. Adoptions, with the IRS. The form is available on or by calling 800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676).

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