There are a number of reasons that could make one want to change their names legally. Most of the people who change their names are the newly married. Some may require adopting the surname of her husband and this would require that they take along their marriage certificate so that they can have their name changed legally. Other people change their name because they dislike their current name. You may also want to change your name after a divorce. A couple may want to adopt hyphenated surnames to form a new name. You may also want a less ethnic name. There are many reasons that one may choose to change their name. In all of the above instances, you can legally apply to have a change of name. Your sscard name change will also be required upon successfully and legally adopting your new name. However, you will not have to apply for a new social security card number as your old number will be retained on the new Social security card.
Here are 4 tips that can help you to legally change your name:
- Choose your new name carefully
Changing your name legally is a serious decision that requires sufficient time and patience. This is a process that takes time and one has to be ready to change most of their documents to adopt the new name. Ensure that you like the new name that you want to change to. Practice signing it and maybe you can have your family and friends start calling you by this name. If you like the name, you can go ahead and start the legal process of changing your name. In choosing the new name, you have to follow the right procedures and ensure that you are not avoiding bankruptcy or other reasons that may have you denied the name change. It should not be a symbol or an obscene name. You can do your own research on the requirements of a new name change.
- Fill out a petition
Most of the states will require you to fill out a petition to explain your name change. You can go to the courthouse and fill the requisite forms. You can as well visit the website of the court to obtain the right forms and fill these appropriately. This petition will be submitted to a judge and this demands that you give serious reasons your name change is necessary. Those changing names because of a divorce need to contact their divorce lawyers to help speed the process. Immigrants, ex-convicts or attorneys may require an affidavit of service so that authorities can be notified appropriately. Once you have filed the petition with the local courts and paid the fees, you can then publish your name change.
- Attend your hearing
Most of the hearings on name changes are straightforward. You can bring the publications of your name change if this is necessary for your state. The judge will ask you some question about the reasons you want to change your name. Be clear and honest in answering these questions. Arrive for your hearing early enough. If your request is denied, you should get a copy of this denial from the judge and try another time. If your request is successful, you should be granted a court order for your change of name.
- Get a new driver’s license and a new social security card with new name(s)
You can take your court order to your social security office or send it through the mail. You need to fill the required application forms so that you can have your new social security card reflecting your name. The same case applies to your driver’s license. Apply to have a new driver’s license with your new names. You will also need to take your time and change your names on all your other documents such as bank accounts, car titles, and credit cards and so on.