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Old 05-08-2013, 12:35 AM   #1
disneynutz


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Name Change And TSA

I wanted to share something that happened to me a couple of weeks ago.

Apparently the State Governments are under some Federal mandate to update their DMV databases. I had my driving license renewed a few months ago and the DMV changed my first name from Bill to William, I was born William but never use it. They got William from a Federal database.

I didn't know that they had made the change and I signed the license Bill. I didn't check the license when it was mailed to me, I just put it in my wallet.

Trying to check my bags at the airport for our WDW trip raised all types of alarms because my ticket said Bill and my license was William. After 40 minutes and 2 supervisors, Southwest updated their records to William and issued me a new ticket and boarding pass.

A TSA agent said that they would have denied me boarding which really would have been a mess.

Just wanted to share to maybe keep someone else from having the same problem.

Bill
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Old 05-08-2013, 03:38 AM   #2
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Glad you got through!

Maybe it's time for a legal name change? My brother got sick of legal mail coming to a full name he didn't identify with, and changed legally to his nickname. Never looked back!
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Old 05-08-2013, 09:27 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disneynutz View Post
I wanted to share something that happened to me a couple of weeks ago.

Apparently the State Governments are under some Federal mandate to update their DMV databases. I had my driving license renewed a few months ago and the DMV changed my first name from Bill to William, I was born William but never use it. They got William from a Federal database.

I didn't know that they had made the change and I signed the license Bill. I didn't check the license when it was mailed to me, I just put it in my wallet.

Trying to check my bags at the airport for our WDW trip raised all types of alarms because my ticket said Bill and my license was William. After 40 minutes and 2 supervisors, Southwest updated their records to William and issued me a new ticket and boarding pass.

A TSA agent said that they would have denied me boarding which really would have been a mess.

Just wanted to share to maybe keep someone else from having the same problem.

Bill
Yes, you are supposed to have the name on your ticket match your government issued photo ID exactly, small differences--such as Bill vs. William--should not be a problem unless their are extenuating circumstances. I'm not sure why you got such a hassle unless there were some unusual factors present that weren't completely explained to you.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:28 AM   #4
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Old 05-08-2013, 11:23 AM   #5
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Normally, common nicknames don't cause problems with TSA, and Bill is certainly a common nickname for William. You must have been there on "secret inspection" day, for them to hardline so much about a nickname that is pretty much universally recognized by native English speakers, ESPECIALLY when you had gov't issued ID that contained both variants.

That said, if you really insist on using a nickname on legal documents, then it is time to formally change your name, or else change your paperwork habits. Travel isn't the only place where using variant names on legally-binding documents can cause headaches; banking, especially, can be an issue.

FWIW, my dad was also a William who was universally known as Bill, but on any kind of legal document, William it was. (My DS is named after him, also goes by a nickname, and also signs any kind of legal document as William.)

Also, in legal circles William is one of those names that has a universally accepted abbreviation: Wm. You will even find the US Constitution signed that way; at least two of the delegates did so. (My dad did use this on minor work-related things like receipts for expense reimbursements.)
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