Everyone has the right to legally change their name. Many people change their names depending on a change in familial circumstances, such as marriage or divorce.
How Do I Legally Change My Name After Getting Married?
A newlywed wanting to change their name needs the original marriage license with the raised seal. This has the individual’s new last name on it. After receiving the marriage certificate, the newlywed must:
- Change the last name with the Social Security Administration
- Complete the name-change application
- Pay any required fees
The Social Security Administration will send a new social security card within 10 business days of the application.
Once they have their new Social Security card, their name is legally changed. They can then change their name on their:
- Driver license
- Bank accounts
- Post office
- Voter registration
How Do I Change My Name Back to My Maiden Name?
In many states, all a spouse must do is ask the judge over the divorce case to change the last name back to the maiden name. If a divorce decree does not show a name change, an individual can restore their maiden name with some proof of it on an old document like a passport. If that is not an option, just consistently start using the maiden name. After that, request the change on documents such as licenses.
What If I Just Want to Change My Name Legally?
An individually wanting to change their name legally must petition the court for the permission to do so. The exact court they must file the petition at depends on the state where they reside.
In order to file a name change petition, a person needs to:
- Meet residency requirements
- Be at least 18 years old
- Pay the filing fee
- Give notice to interested parties, such as non-custodial parent of their minor child
Should I Contact a Lawyer about a Legal Name Change?
Yes, it is highly recommended that you contact a family law lawyer regarding a name change. They will help you follow the correct procedure and file all of the correct paperwork.