Legal Name Change Documents - How To Change Your Name

What to Know about Legally Changing your Name and More How Much Is A Passport Renewal

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What is Legal Name Change Pa Name Change Form

Your Name is part of your personality and your primary legal identifier, appearing on all personal legal documents. Your name is given at birth but it might not remain the same during your whole life. You can change name at any time. There are different reasons for people wanting to change their government name. Following the official procedure, they can obtain new identity documents with new personal details.

This process is not very complicated but it requires time to reach consistency throughout all your documents. Around the country, this process has some distinctions that need specific paperwork to be completed. Getting the correct forms for a name change that comply with your state’s standards and regulations is one of the first steps to take in this process. If you want to learn how to legally change your name and look for specific templates, you're in the right place.

A legal name change refers to the administrative process of altering an individual’s current name under local legal requirements. Citizens who want to obtain ID documents with new personal details need to file a petition and undergo a particular court procedure. Depending on the reasons for such a change, they must accompany their application with certain paperwork used as proof of the legality of their request. Here’s a list of forms to provide:

  • a marriage certificate is the primary evidence to legally change a name on a passport, SSN, and other documents after marriage;
  • a divorce certificate serves as a reason to legally change your name and return to your maiden surname after marriage termination;
  • an adoption decree is used for a minor’s name change and confirms the relationship between the adoptee and their new parents. It’s necessary to give the adopted child your surname officially;
  • a court order serves as evidence for changing a name due to reasons other than the above. For example, this is applicable when an adult decides to alter their first or last name to the one they have chosen themselves;
  • a birth certificate and public records showing personal details can serve as evidence when petitioning for a government name change after ID documents are stolen or lost.

After the court procedure is completed and you get a positive decision, consider the next steps for your name change checklist. This includes getting a new SSN and driving license, informing your bank and getting new credit cards, updating your records with your medical care and insurance provider, and changing rental agreements and other contracts.

Reasons for Changing a Name Name Document

The law allows anyone to change their name for almost any reason and at any time. A person can not apply for this if they are trying to escape from various liabilities, cover up a committed crime, or for any other unlawful reasons. Among the most common grounds to legally change your name can be one of the following:

1. Name change after marriage. This is the most popular reason to change a surname. Traditionally, brides take their husband’s family name but any of the spouses can do it or even decide to double and hyphen their surnames.

2. Common-Law marriage name change. A common-law marriage refers to a relationship not officially registered by the authorities. Therefore, if partners decide to have the same surname, the legal process requires a certain court petition to be filed.

3. Divorce. If one of the partners decides to return to their maiden name after the marriage is terminated, it may be stated in the divorce judgment. Otherwise, there’s the need to go through standard court formalities for the name change.

4. Minor child name change. Parents change their minor child’s surname when the custodial parent gets married and wants to make it consistent with their new surname. Also, minors go through this procedure after adoption or after a previously absent father reunites with the family.

5. Name adaptation during immigration. In some situations, an immigrant may change their name to make it sound more typical for their new country or adapt it to the local phonetics and spelling rules.

6. Name inconsistency in documents. Sometimes an individual's government name on their passport or ID card doesn't match the details on other documents, like an SSN or a driving license. This may cause various legal issues. To avoid them, the citizen should apply for a legal name change in those papers.

7. Individual wishes and preferences. Anyone can change a name they got from birth to a name they want. They may decide to do this due to religious reasons or simply choose something more unique.

How to Change Your Name Change Of Name

Although the name change process is generally straightforward and inexpensive, it’s important to strictly follow the guidelines to avoid further document issues and inconsistencies. Adhere to the instructions below on how to change your name legally and obtain proper legal templates to complete it without hiring a lawyer:

  • Review your state regulations. Each state has its own laws and policies in most areas. Look for your state of residency name change requirements, check whether you need to additionally provide your fingerprints and how long the process takes.
  • Check the required form checklist. Along with the petition to the court, you also need to provide a determined set of evidence documents accompanying your request.
  • Get the essential legal templates. Use the US Legal Forms website to get professionally drafted state-specific templates. Create an account with a valid subscription to use the service. Choose your state, search for the suitable forms, look through the Preview, and click Buy Now to save them.
  • Fill out your petition sample. Follow the guidelines to complete your petition and other required name change forms. With the US Legal Forms Premium plan, you can fill out and sign forms electronically with the integrated document editor.
  • File your application and attend the hearing. Bring your document package to the local court clerk and pay the fee. During the hearing, confirm your motives for changing a name and swear under oath you have no unlawful reasons for that.
  • Make a formal advertisement in local media. If your state demands it, make an advertisement in local newspapers about your name change to inform your creditors.
  • Initiate other documents update. Apply to change a name in your SSN, driving license, and other documents to keep them consistent.

FAQ Pennsylvania Name Change Form

How long does it take to change your name? Florida Name Change Form

Because laws and regulations vary from state to state, the duration of legal name change also differs throughout the country. Before filing your name change petition to the court, applicants should take different steps depending on their residency. Generally, it can take a couple of weeks to 4-5 months until the court will approve your request.

Do I need a lawyer to change my name? How To Legally Change Your Name

No, there’s no need to hire an attorney and spend extra money on legal services to change your name. Regardless of your reasons, you can prepare all the necessary paperwork yourself. The only requirement is to strictly follow your state regulations for the name change procedure and follow the guidelines. On the US Legal Forms website, you can easily choose the correct templates to suit your case and your state’s local regulation, and use them multiple times. Also, with a Premium subscription, you can complete and sign your forms electronically in a secure document editor.

What is involved in a court-ordered name change? Oklahoma Name Change Form

The court-ordered name change process consists of several steps. First, the applicant completes the appropriate legal form and prepares an order to show cause for their request and a decree for such a change. They file the package of all the necessary documents to the court clerk and, in some states, inform the local newspapers about getting a new name.

Who should I notify of my new name? Arkansas Name Change Form

Once the court procedure is completed and you receive the positive court decision, you should notify all of your related authorities and organizations. For instance, you need to initiate your driving license and SSN name change and update your passport. You also need to inform your bank and employer (or educational institution), postal service, insurer, and doctors about any change in your personal details.

Do I need to file a name change if I'm getting married or divorced? Legal Name Change

In the case of changing a name after marriage or divorce, there’s no need to file a special petition to the court. Your marriage/divorce certificates are legal grounds for requesting your documents renewal.

Is there a deadline for a name change after marriage? Alabama Name Change Form

There are no time limits for changing a name after your marriage. As long as you get your marriage certificate, you can start the procedure of obtaining a new ID and other essential documents, but the law doesn’t set any strict deadlines.

How is a name change for a minor different from a name change for an adult? Missouri Name Change Form

Adults (aged over 18) can choose their new name and apply for a change through the court procedure. For minors, this procedure requires the parents or legal guardians to make such an application. Both parents must file the petition to the court on behalf of their child. If only one parent is the applicant, another must give their consent to change their child’s name. If the second parent disagrees with this decision, another parent can request such a change, officially notifying their spouse about it.

Can I choose any name I want? Oregon Name Change Form

Typically, the law allows citizens to choose any name they find appropriate for themselves. However, there are some restrictions: you can't select confusing or intricate names containing numbers and punctuation symbols. Also, you can’t change your current name to something offensive, insulting, or obscene.

Tips for Preparing Legal Name Change Documents

  1. Weigh all the advantages and disadvantages of changing your name. Before starting the entire process of a surname change and completing Legal Name Change Documents, you need to keep in mind that it's necessary to preserve name consistency throughout your important documents, such as your passport or social security card. As a rule, it's an extremely time- and resource-consuming process. In some situations, it's preferable to keep your old name if you want to share the same surname with your children after divorce or for the sake of your professional development.
  2. Make sure you put together the right set of papers. Depending on your case - be it marriage and divorce, or any other personal situations, you need to get all the necessary paperwork ready. For instance, in order to make changes to your name after getting married, you’re required to get a few copies of the executed marriage certificate and submission-ready documents. You will find Legal Name Change Documents at US Legal Forms, the most extensive virtual collection of legal paperwork.
  3. Check the polices associated with changing names in your state. The guidelines for name transition differ from one state to another. For instance, in certain states, a name change after divorce requires you to undergo the troubles of executing a great deal of paperwork and other actions, whereas these actions are regarded needless in other states. All you need to do is update the information in an array of papers. If you need to fill out the Legal Name Change Documents, try US Legal Forms. It features more than 85,000 forms drafted by legal professionals and offers different supporting materials to help you find and fill out the documents properly.
  4. Never use a change of name form to dodge problems with the law. You have the right to get or not to get your old name back for whatever reasons. However, if consider filling out and submitting Legal Name Change Documents in an effort to hide from creditors or paying for your child's support, it may result in heavy fees and penalties or other implications.