Filing a petition for change of name is a necessary process so that your new name after marriage or divorce can reflect on your documents in case of employment or travel purposes.
In this article, you will learn how to file a petition for a change of name in Georgia.
What Does the Name Change in Georgia Mean?
A name change means to change your name after marriage or divorce, and the new name will reflect on all your documents. In most jurisdictions, a petition for a change of name of an adult must be filed in the county court in which the Petitioner (i.e. the person seeking to change his or her name) lives.
Any lawful reason that the Petitioner deems a benefit is typically adequate to satisfy most courts. For example, the Petitioner may prefer a new name due to social or religious reasons.
Why to Apply for a Name Change
Generally, the common reason to file a petition for a name change is when you are:
- Newly married
- Need a divorce.
- Need social Identification
- Religious reasons
A person may not change his or her name for purposes of fraud or if it will violate the rights of others.
How to Legally Change a Name in Georgia
Many life events trigger the need to change your name. Marriage and divorce are two of the most common. If you want to legally change your name in Georgia, complete the following steps.
#1. File a Petition to Change Name of Adult
First, you will need to file a Petition to change your name with the Superior Family Court Division in the county where you live. Most courts have copies of the forms available online or at the clerk's office. Alternatively, you can work with an online legal service provider to prepare your name change petition.
#2. Publish Notice of Your Request for Name Change
You are responsible for publishing your intent to change your name in your local newspaper within a week after filing your petition. The notice should include:
- Your current name
- Your desired name
- The name of the court hearing the petition
- The petition's filing date
- A statement notifying the public that objections to your name change may be filed with the court
The notice must appear in the newspaper at least once a week for four weeks. You will need to file proof with the clerk of the court's office that the notice was published for four weeks in a row.
#3. Request and Attend Your Name Change Hearing
If no one files an objection to your name change after four weeks, you can request a hearing date from the clerk of court. The clerk will schedule a hearing and notify you of the hearing. If you do not receive notice of the hearing within a few days, you should check with the clerk's office. Your petition will be denied if you miss the hearing.
#4. Notify Government Agencies
Georgia requires that you update your name on your driver's license within 60 days of changing your name with the court. Take a certified copy of the order to the Georgia Department of Driver Services to complete the process. You also need to change your name on your Social Security card through the Social Security Administration. If you have a passport, you can contact the U.S. Department of State to change your passport.
While changing your name can take time, effort, and a whole lot of research, there's no need for much bellyaching. Our Georgia name change forms have everything you need to get the job done right the first time. Avoid figuring out what you are required to do and the cost of an attorney. Find the name change form for you and get started today.