St. Louis Divorce Lawyers

Frequently Asked Questions About Changing Your Name

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the name change process, contact The Betz Law Firm.

A person may need or want to change their name for many reasons. Whatever your reason, you may have questions about the name change process or what changing your name will entail.

At The Betz Law Firm, we are committed to guiding our clients through the court process with the same level of professionalism that we would wish for our family members. We aim to help you navigate the legal process and answer your questions regarding your name change.

Here are frequently asked questions and answers about changing your name:

  • Do I need a lawyer to change my name in Missouri?
    • The law does not require you to obtain a lawyer to change your name. However, changing your name requires going before a judge in court. You must submit a petition and go before a judge. Having a name change lawyer will help you overcome any hurdles and will likely help you avoid them altogether.
  • Are there consequences to legally changing your name?
    • There are typically no significant consequences, but a lot is involved with the process. Your bank accounts and credit cards will need to be updated, as well as your driver’s license and passport, which means you’ll have a lot of paperwork to complete. Once the name change has taken place legally, you may not be able to use any of your former documents. Changing your name can have an impact on your taxes. The names on your tax return must match Social Security Administration records. According to the IRS, a mismatch in your name can delay your tax refund.
  • How do I change my name after my divorce?
    • You can return to your previous name or go by a different name. However, to make your new name official, you need a court order approving the change. If you have not yet gotten divorced, you can include a request for a name change as part of the divorce proceeding.
  • What are the benefits of legally changing your name?
    • Non-gender conforming individuals, such as transgender or non-binary, wish to find a name that fits their identity. By legally changing your name, you will no longer be required to use your deadname when signing contracts or other legal documents. Bank accounts will now reflect the name your identity conforms with, not what was assigned to you at birth. While it may seem small, this can have an incredibly positive impact on your day-to-day life.
  • What are the top reasons people change their names?
    • The most common reasons an individual may need or want to change their name include marriage, divorce, adoption, and desire to find a name that fits their identity.
  • Can a petition for my name change be denied?
    • Judges generally take name changes very seriously. They will not allow an individual to change their name to one that is not proper or detrimental to another party. They also reserve the right to ask for supporting evidence to the contrary if they feel that a name change is being requested to defraud another person, avoid legal judgments or actions, or avoid having to repay a debt or other obligation.

Changing your name is a multi-step process involving paperwork and court procedures. Allow our team of professional name change attorneys to assist you with your petition to ensure no unforeseen hurdles during the process. If you have any other questions regarding your name change, contact The Betz Law Firm.

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