Name Change Lawyer
Our team of name change lawyers can assist you with your petition to ensure there are no unforeseen hurdles during the process.
There are many reasons why an individual may want or need to change their name. If you’re looking to change your name legally, you do not need to figure out all of the legal technicalities on your own. At Pinellas Family Lawyer, our firm has handled every type of name change situation. We can help guide you through the process from start to finish.
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Several things must be completed before a person can legally petition to change their name. As part of the petition, specific requirements must be included to be considered.
Reasons People Change Their Name
Your name is something that follows you everywhere you go. It identifies who you are, which makes it very personal. If you want or need to change your name legally, you’re not alone! There are various reasons people change their name – some of these include:
- Divorce – If a woman took her husband’s last name when they married, she might return to her maiden name when divorced.
- Marriage – This is one of the most common reasons someone decides to change their last name. They get married and want to take their husband’s surname. However, it’s not just the woman, some men want to take their wife’s surname.
- Changing a child’s last name – A mother may wish to change her child’s last name if the father is no longer in the picture. Or, if a formerly absent father comes back into the picture, they may want to change their child’s last name.
- Transgender or non-binary – Non-gender conforming individuals, such as transgender or non-binary, find that they wish to find a name that fits their identity.
- Don’t like their birth name – Many people request a name change simply because they don’t like the name they were given. Depending on the circumstances, they may prefer something more or less unique.
- Adoption – When a child is adopted by their step-father, for example, they may want to change their child’s surname. Or, when a couple adopts a child, they will likely want to change their name.
- Other personal reasons – Some individuals change their name for religious reasons, to reflect their genetic heritage, or to avoid discrimination.
Whatever your reasons for needing or wanting to change your name legally, Pinellas Family Lawyer can help! Changing your name is a legal process that requires filing paperwork with the proper agencies.
Petition for Change of Name
If you are 18 or older and want to change your name, you must file a Petition for Change of Name. The petition for legally changing your name in Florida begins with checking your criminal history. You must submit your fingerprints for a state and national criminal records check.
The petition must state important information the law requires for a name change to be approved and granted. It must define who you are, where you live, why you want to change your name, and whether or not the change is being made in good faith.
Why Hire a Name Change Lawyer?
A lawyer can help you with the entire process, from drafting the petition, reviewing it, and filing it. They will also appear in court at the hearing, where the court allows an attorney to help with handling specific tasks.
From start to finish, your name change attorney will provide you with all the necessary help and information to change your name successfully. They will provide the correct documents and perform the required background checks. Hiring an attorney will give you peace of mind knowing that the process is being handled correctly. They will ensure that the entire process runs smoothly.
Can Your Name Change Request Be Denied?
In Florida, family law judges take name changes seriously. They will not allow a person to change their name to one that is improper or harmful to another party. They also maintain the right to ask for supporting evidence to the contrary if they feel that a name change is being requested to do the following:
- Defraud another person
- Avoid having to repay a debt or other obligation
- Avoid legal judgments or actions
In addition, a third party can object to the petition. In this case, the court will need to explore the matter to ensure that the petition does not violate its policies.
Contact Pinellas Family Lawyer
Changing your name is a multi-step process involving paperwork and court procedures. However, you do not have to go through the process alone, nor figure out all of the legal technicalities without help. Our Florida lawyers have experience representing clients in name change cases throughout the state. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
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Whether you are contemplating divorce, have already been served with dissolution paperwork, or need help settling paternity or child custody disputes, call us today.