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Can My Parents Stop Me From Changing My Name?


At The Betz Law Firm, our experienced attorneys can help ensure that all legal requirements are met and that potential objections are appropriately addressed.

Changing your name is a significant decision that many contemplate for various reasons. Whether it’s due to personal preference, marriage, divorce, or other personal reasons, understanding the legal process is crucial.

The Betz Law Firm is here to assist you through every step of the process, ensuring your name change is handled smoothly and efficiently.

Name Change Lawyer St. Louis

Understanding the Name Change Process

In Missouri, as in most states, you generally have the right to change your name, but certain conditions and legal procedures must be followed. Whether your parents can stop you from changing your name depends on your age and the specific circumstances.

If You Are a Minor (Under 18)

The name change process is more complex for minors and typically requires parental involvement.

  • Parental Consent: Minors usually need the consent of their parents or legal guardians to change their name. If both parents are active in the child’s life, both will generally need to consent. This ensures that both guardians agree with the significant change in their child’s identity.
  • Court Approval: A court must approve the name change even with parental consent. The court’s primary consideration is whether the change serves the child’s best interest. This might involve evaluating the reasons for the change and the potential impact on the child’s well-being.
  • Objections from Parents: If one parent consents to the name change but the other objects, the court will conduct a hearing. During this hearing, the objecting parent can present their reasons against the change. The judge will consider these objections alongside the reasons for the name change to determine what is in the child’s best interest.

If You Are an Adult (18 or Older)

For adults, the process is more straightforward.

  • Parental Consent Not Required: Once you turn 18, you are legally considered an adult. This means you do not need parental consent to change your name. You have the autonomy to make this decision independently.
  • Court Approval: Despite the lack of need for parental consent, you still must file a petition with the court and obtain approval for the name change. The court will review your application to ensure the name change is not being pursued for fraudulent reasons or to avoid legal responsibilities.
  • Objections: While your parents or other individuals can voice their objections during the court process, it is unlikely that their objections alone will prevent the name change. As an adult, if your reasons for changing your name are legitimate and lawful, the court will likely approve your request.

Navigating the Name Change Process

The name change process can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. At The Betz Law Firm, we specialize in guiding our clients through this process, whether an uncontested divorce or a personal name change. Our experienced attorneys can help ensure that all legal requirements are met and potential objections appropriately addressed.

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