When a couple gets married, many people will choose to take their spouse’s last name. Traditionally, a wife will take her new husband’s last name. Now, however, it is more common for spouses to keep their own name or even hyphen their spouse’s last name with their own. When a couple gets divorced, a spouse may want to change their last name back to the last name they had prior to the marriage.
When you and your spouse get divorced, you are permitted to change your last name back to what it was. Upon the finalization of your divorce, you will have to request the court to use the name that you had before the marriage. It is important that you know that this does not apply to children. If you and your spouse have children together and they had the same last name as your spouse, their last name will remain the same even after the divorce.
If you wish to change your name or your child’s name after divorce, you will be required to bring a number of different documents to the court upon the name change. There are court papers that you will have to file that include a petition to change your name that has been notarized. The name change petition requires you to provide your reasoning for changing your name, whether or not you have been convicted of a crime, bankruptcy, liens in your name, any lawsuits you may be involved in, as well as a copy of the child or spousal support orders you are to abide by. In addition, you will also need to provide a birth certificate, a court fee, and possibly a request for judicial intervention if you are going through the Supreme Court. If you are going through the name change process on behalf of your child, you may also be required to provide additional documentation.
Changing your name can bring a level of closure at the finalization of your divorce. If you have questions about divorce, contact an experienced divorce and family law attorney who can provide you with assistance.
Robert Pollack is an experienced divorce and family law attorney in Long Island, New York. Contact The Pollack Law Firm, P.C., to set up a free initial consultation.