Posted in General
Personal Injury Lawyer
When you took your spouse’s name, you thought it would be a permanent change. Unfortunately, things don’t always work out as you wish they would, so what can you do about that name? The following are three ways you can get your maiden name back.
- Include It in the Divorce Petition
Some individuals who are going through a divorce can include changing back to a maiden name in the petition for divorce. If you do this, be sure you are very clear that it’s what you intend to do, making sure the judge understands you no longer want to use your married name. During your divorce hearing, take some time to stand before the judge so you can explain why you want your maiden name back. As long as you are simply changing it back to how it was before you were married, many judges will grant it to you without any other legal proceedings.
If you are able to do this, you will need a certified copy of the divorce decree so you can use it when changing your name back on anything legal. This includes the Social Security Administration office, the IRS and the Registry of Motor Vehicles. You should also take the decree to the bank, to your employer and to get a new passport.
- Amend Your Divorce Decree
In the case you are not able to include the name change in your divorce decree, whether it was denied or you were too late in adding it, you can file to have the decree amended. When you apply to do this, be sure to include a copy of the decree so there’s proof the marriage was legally concluded. It’s possible the judge will look over the application and grant your name change, but it’s also possible you’ll have to attend a hearing. If you do attend a hearing, simply explain to the judge the reason you want to revert back to your maiden name, and it will often be granted you.
- Filing a Government-Issued Petition
Anyone, anytime, can fill out a government-issued petition for a name change and file it with the court. It does cost an additional fee to file this type of petition, and you can contact the courthouse to find out what the fee is ahead of time. In some cases, you may be required to publicly announce your name change, should anyone object to it, and your lawyer can help you determine if that’s required in your state.
If you’re ready to change back to your maiden name after a divorce, during a separation or any other time, you do have some options.