Are you a woman preparing to go through, or going through a divorce? If so, are you planning to keep your married name, or do you want to change your name back to your maiden name? What about your kids? Will you change their last names along with yours? Here, you will find the answers to two of the questions that you may have about changing your name after your marriage comes to an end.
Should you change your name during the divorce proceedings or wait until it is final?
The choice really is yours. If you choose to drop your married name during the divorce proceedings, you could save a little on the cost of filing. If you wait until the proceedings have been complete, you will be required to pay additional filing fees and endure a second procedure to finalize the name change.
If you choose or failed to revert your name during the divorce proceedings, you will need to file an application for the name change and provide evidence that you have previously used that name. For example, you may be asked to show your birth certificate or even a passport with your maiden name on it.
Can you change your child's last name to remove the father's last name?
This can be a tricky subject. In some states, changing the child's name to eliminate the father's name is difficult, especially if the father is maintaining an active role as a parent. You will have to petition the court for the name change and await the decision of the court.
The court will give special consideration to cases in which it is in the child's best interest to change his or her last name. If the court determines that the child could suffer physically or emotionally from having the father's name, the petition will likely be approved for the change with no problems.
Note: Changing your child's last name from his or her father's name does not release the father from financial obligations or cease the recognition of him as the father of the child. This means that any visitation or child support orders will be enforced.
In any case, it is best to have a divorce lawyer (such as one from Reneer & Associates) helping you through this complicated process. The lawyer knows the laws of your state regarding divorce and name changes and can help you avoid costly and time consuming mistakes.