Name Change: Common reasons for a name change include divorce, dissatisfaction with your current name or the desire to change your child or family’s last name.
A petition will be filed with the court citing your reason for wanting a name change to initiate the process. If your petition is approved, you will receive an order of name change from the court.
Changing the Name of an Adult Person: an adult can petition the court to officially grant a name change. The result is a court order recognizing the new name.
If a woman was divorced in Utah and did not change her name during that proceeding, she can later request the family law court to restore her birth or former name at any time after the divorce becomes final.
Special considerations pertain to adults who want to change their name and who are in prison, on parole or registered as sex offenders. They include:
Petitioning the Court to Change the Name of a Minor: In the case of a minor child, where both parents agree, changing a child’s name can often be as easy as changing the name of an adult. Where both parents request the change, courts normally grant the request automatically. When one parent alone files a petition to change a child’s name, the other parent must be given proper notice of the proposed name change.
If a minor child is being adopted, the minor’s name can be changed through the adoption proceedings without having to file a separate court action.
Changing Name During or After Divorce: Some women desire to change a name after divorce. Changing your name after a divorce is a very personal decision. If the parties have children, often the woman does not desire to change her name because of the children.
In Utah, as in most states, you can request that the judge handling your divorce make a formal order to restore a former name or restore a birth name. If your divorce decree contains such an order, you will only need to obtain a certified copy of the Judgment. Once you have this official documentation, you can use it to have your name changed on your identification and personal records.