Changing Your Name After Divorce - For You, For Your Child
Divorce and Name Changes in Pennsylvania
Over the past quarter century, married couples in America have waxed and waned over the surname quandary - should we combine our names with a hyphen or should we keep our names separate, like they were prior to marriage? Should we go under one last name, either the husband's or the wife's, or should we do something altogether different? Ultimately, statistics have revealed that a vast a majority of couples still go the traditional route of retaining the husband's family name and shedding the maiden name. Of course the term "husband" is relative to your particular circumstance, and by no means is regulated to strictly a male / female scenario, but for the sake for clarity we will use the classic terms in order to distinguish one from the other.
Your Maiden Name
But what about when a couple is divorced and the individual who took on a surname wishes to change it back to their maiden name? How are they able to accomplish this? And what about the children in this case? Are they stuck with the last name of the husband or can they also take on the other partner's maiden name?
The answers are actually easier to come by than you may think. But it does require a bit of work and a lot of patience.
When it comes to a husband or wife wishing to return to their maiden name, they need only fill out the proper documentation and submit to the designated offices. In Pennsylvania, the Office of Prothonotary is in charge of name changing after a couple divorces. There, the petitioner will fill out a Notice to Retake Prior Surname and submit all the appropriate supplemental files that go with it. Once it has been certified, it makes obtaining the various other forms of identification much easier. The individual in question can then easily move onto their driver's license, Social Security ID and various other credit cards.
Your Child's Name
On the other hand, proving your child needs to change their name is a bit more complicated. In order to effectively accomplish this you will need court approval to do so. The burden is on you to prove that it is in the best interests of your child to have their name changed to your maiden or surname. While not an impossible task, it can be an uphill climb that almost always demands knowledgeable representation to accomplish. It is highly recommended that you consult with your Montgomery County family law attorney to discuss your options when it comes to name changing for both yourself and your child.
Contact the Law Offices of Sheryl R. Rentz, P.C. today and schedule an appointment to discuss your case at length. The number to dial is (610) 645-0100.