If you want to know how to change your PayPal username, you can do so with just a few simple steps. PayPal allows the correction of a username for different reasons, including to correct a minor error in your name or to reflect your new legal name. In this article, we’ll look at the different scenarios in which you are allowed to change your username and the different ways you can go about it.
When Can You Change Your PayPal Username?
PayPal is one of the most reliable and popular digital payment apps. However, its very large user base can lead to some confusion regarding the influx and outflux of payments. For example, a slight typographical error when typing in an account name can easily lead to your payment being sent to someone else.
Additionally, if your name is not accurate, then the people who want to transact with you may, at some point, end up sending money to the wrong person. With this in mind, you need to make sure that your account name accurately reflects your real name or business name.
PayPal does allow users to change their username on the application. However, only very specific instances are when a change of name is justified or allowed by PayPal. These instances include: if your name was misspelled or if you’ve legally changed your name (marriage or court order changing your name). If you’ve recently changed the name of your business, you can change your username to reflect that as well.
How to Change Your PayPal Username
Now that we’ve looked into the acceptable reasons for wanting to change your username, we can already get to how to change your PayPal username. Note that you can only change your username through a web browser on the official PayPal website. You cannot change it using your phone or tablet on the PayPal mobile application. Here are the steps you can take to change your PayPal username:
Change Your PayPal Username for Personal Account
- Visit the official PayPal webpage using any web browser on your desktop computer or laptop, and sign in to your PayPal account.
- Visit PayPal’s account settings page and select the “Update” option next to your username. From there, you can change your legal name, update your name, or correct an error in your name.
- Select the option applicable to your situation and upload relevant documents to prove your identity (i.e., government-issued photo identification or birth certificate).
Additional Notes on Changing Your Legal Name
Note that the option to change your legal name applies when a legal change in your status or identity has been issued. For example, this applies when you get married, and your name has officially been changed to your spouse’s last name. This also applies to when your name was changed with a court order.
Changing your legal name will also require additional documentation to prove that your name has been changed. You will need to provide a scanned copy of your marriage certificate or court order with your new name.
Change PayPal Username for Business Account
There are two ways of creating a business account. The first way is for you to sign up for a business account using your business email address and bank account. The second way is to upgrade a personal account. To upgrade your account:
- Visit the official PayPal webpage using any web browser on your desktop computer or laptop. Sign in to your PayPal account.
- Click on the “Settings” button and click “Upgrade to a Business Account.”
- The system will prompt you to enter crucial information about your business. It will then present you with a user agreement, which you should read and approve.
- Once you’ve done that, click on the “Upgrade Account” option, and then you’re all set. Note that your business name will appear on your account if you are using one. However, the client-side will only be able to see the name you used to create the account.
A Note on Similar Names on PayPal
When using PayPal, it’s important to take into account that people legitimately share names. In other words, there must be millions of John Smiths, and Jane Does around the world. In other words, there’s probably a handful of people out there with the exact name as you, and that is perfectly natural.
But the similarities that you have with people with the same name as you stop there since you have unique data points to differentiate yourself from them. Case in point, you have a different bank account number, credit card number, address, social security number, and the like. This allows PayPal to set you apart from other users with the same name. This is also precisely why it’s so important to verify your account.
Of course, it’s also possible for someone else to try to impersonate you by creating an account using your name. Most scammers copy your name, intending to receive money in your name. However, this would be very difficult since they lack your personal and banking details. In other words, they don’t have enough information to verify the account.
Having said this, if you have any reason to believe someone is impersonating you to collect money in your name, contact PayPal Customer Support and local police for good measure.
Venmo: A Great Alternative to PayPal
If you find PayPal too complicated or crowded for your taste, we might suggest a few PayPal alternatives. Among these alternatives, the second-best option would be Venmo.
Like PayPal, Venmo is an all-around app that lets you store, send, and receive money from other users of the service. PayPal recently purchased Venmo, and this is why the two services have very similar capabilities and security practices.
However, the one thing that differentiates Venmo from PayPal has something to do with its scope. Venmo is only operational within the US, meaning you can only transact with users from within the US. On the other hand, PayPal is an international service that allows you to transact with others from around the world.
Having said this, if the majority of your contacts are from the US, then Venmo might be easier to use compared to PayPal. Having said this, Venmo will also require you to verify your account after signing up. Check out this guide explaining the step-by-step process for verifying your Venmo account.
Final Thoughts on How to Change Your PayPal Username
Changing your username on PayPal is a relatively simple process. However, you can only change your name under very specific circumstances, and you can only do so to reflect your true name or business name. You cannot use someone else’s name or come up with a fake name to represent your account. Having said this, PayPal will also ask for documentation to prove your identity. Alternatively, you may have to provide documents to prove that your change of name is backed by a court order or certificate.
Just be careful not to mistake your username verification with the verification process for your PayPal account. The verification processes for these two have entirely different purposes and require an entirely different set of documents to prove your identity. For as long as you can provide documents proving your identity, the process should be a breeze. Alternatively, you can try PayPal’s newly-acquired mobile payment service, Venmo.