There are several options available for obtaining a legal name change. Names may be changed through an adoption decree, through a name change petition, or through application by someone who is widowed or divorced for the resumption of a maiden name, name of a prior deceased husband, or prior divorced husband if her children have that husband’s surname.
Resuming a Prior Name
You may resume a maiden name, or the name of a previously divorced husband if you have children with that husband’s surname, once you have a divorce judgment. Additionally, you may resume the name of a prior deceased husband if you are a widow. These name changes require a valid photo ID and a copy of the divorce judgment or death certificate.
Name Change of a Minor Child (Under 16 years of age)
A minor child’s parent(s) or legal guardian may file an application to change the minor’s name. However, the name of a minor child may not be changed without the consent of both parents (if living), unless no father is listed on the birth certificate and the child has not been legitimized by the father. If there is no father listed on the birth certificate, the child must be at least one year old to complete the name change and a Birth Certificate issued within 30 days of the name change request. These name changes require a valid photo ID for both parents and a copy of the birth certificate.
Other Name Changes
If you are not resuming a prior name but would still like your name or the name of your minor child (16 and over) changed the following requirements must be met: a notice must be posted for at least ten (10) days indicating your intent to change your name, you must demonstrate good and sufficient reason for the name change, you must have at least two notarized affidavits demonstrating proof of your good character filed by citizens of the county who know you, and you must provide a National fingerprint criminal history record check.