Name Change

questions & answers

Question: My daughter's father has been incarcerated since she was 5 months old . we get no help from him or his family. does he have to be informed and approve to change her name to my last name? he has a 25 to life sentence.

Answer: Generally, the superior court in your county will have information and instructions regarding a name change for a minor child available in its Self-Service Center.  Many of the appropriate forms and instructions can be found online.  For example, the necessary forms and information for residents of Maricopa County can be found here.  http://www.superiorcourt.maricopa.gov/SuperiorCourt/Self-ServiceCenter/Forms/CivilCases/civil_cvncm1.asp 
AZLawHelp has a useful article regarding name changes, “How to Change Your Name.”  http://www.azlawhelp.org/articles_info.cfm?mc=1&sc=8&articleid=60  To summarize the relevant portions, the parent who is not making the request for a name change must be notified of the petition.  Furthermore, a court is much more likely to grant the name change if both parents consent.  If one parent does not consent, the court may still grant the petition but it is less likely to do so.  You will likely have to explain to the court why the name change should be granted despite the objection.  While this petition may be successfully filed and granted without the aid of an attorney, it would likely be helpful to consult with a lawyer should the other parent object to the name change.

QUESTIONS

  • My daughter's father has been incarcerated since she was 5 months old . we get no help from him or his family. does he have to be informed and approve to change her name to my last name? he has a 25 to life sentence.

STORIES

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  • State Bar of Arizona
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  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
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    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
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