Changing A Child’s Name With Complications is about a real-life teenager who hated her name. She wanted it legally changed. But, her parents were in the most difficult of life’s situations. Separated and going through divorce, and more. It all started when a man called us to ask about costs of Changing a Child’s Name. His teenage daughter had been going by her middle name, hated her first name and had been wanting a Legal Name Change for a long time. As you may know, schools will usually only allow a child’s name change in their records (including classroom registration, certificates, diplomas, year books, etc.) if you give them a Court Order Changing the Name. She was 14, and this was VERY important to her.
The parents had moved apart and filed for divorce, but the divorce was still pending. The father was disabled and they used Fee Waivers to access the courts. After careful consideration, they decided to have us help them navigate the Name Change process to get his daughter the Name she wanted so much.
Sometimes, Even Simple Things Are Hard To Do
Even with perfect paperwork and easy-to-follow instructions, this family had a lot of difficulty getting their child’s name change petition into the court system. The father called me a lot for guidance about where to sign, where to go, what order things had to be done in. He was a nice man and appreciative of the extra help and I didn’t mind going over things several times until he thought he had it straight in his mind. But, often, the next time we’d talk, he’d need some of the same help all over again.
Both Parents finally signed everything, with the daughter’s help. We got the Petition file, changing a child’s name by both parents, arranged the advertising, and set a date for the Hearing to have it Granted. Everybody knew when and where it was, and that they had to be there for this to happen. The Hearing date came and went. The day after the Hearing, the Father called me several times, leaving long messages that were difficult for me to understand. When I called that night, he explained that he had gone to court Monday instead of Friday and the Judge turned down the Petition because no one came to the Hearing. He was very depressed about it and asked me what could be done. He was so sorry.
The Teenager’s Father
The father began to reveal some of his problems: he and the teenager’s mother didn’t speak with one another and all arrangements were being coordinated through their 14 year old daughter; he was in failing health and was told not to drive anymore; a recent couple of bad falls meant he wasn’t able to leave the house much, if at all; he wanted to set up a will to pass his things on to his children and didn’t think he had much time to get it done. He wanted to get some things done before he died. First of all, was the Name Change for his daughter.
There are sometimes when I get the feeling like I should do more to try and help. This was one of them.
The clerk at the court told me the judge had scheduled a Hearing to dismiss the Petition for failure to appear. This clerk had been the one who told the father he had come a day too late and saw how he was. She called me back to tell me the judge was willing to reset the Petition Hearing if the mother, father and daughter would all be there. So there was the hope.
But, the Advertising had to be redone and a court Form had to be redone and filed. And, if all that could be redone, the whole family had to find a way to get to that courtroom on the right day, and all at the same time. I talked to the father a lot to make arrangements, and each time we spoke he sounded weaker. His daughter arranged for rides for everyone, accommodating church schedules and extended family.
And, Sometimes Good Things Happen
The court was in, EZ Name Change was in, the family was in…now we had to get the newspaper to buy in. This was an extraordinary situation. I talked to one of the owners and … as a result, they were in too!
We redid all the Forms and Filed them. The newspaper reran the ad, 4 times. The family arranged all the necessary transportation. I called the day before the scheduled rehearing and the father seemed dazed. He seemed confused that the Hearing date was the very next day. His daughter called me and we talked about the dates and times, and transportation for each family member. I talked to the father again and he sounded clear and focused and ready for the next morning’s events.
The next morning my phone rang about 9am. It was the daughter on her cell phone outside the courtroom. She was whispering that they were next and they didn’t have their Proof of Publication for the advertising! I told her that I checked the court website and saw that the court had received the Proof of Advertising from the newspaper the prior week and to go back in…everything should be alright.
The Childs Name Change Gift
The next call I got was from dad. “We got it”. I could hear the daughter excitedly talking in the background and knew that a good thing had happened. It was really cool how many people pitched in to help make that happen. It was one of those really “smiley” moments, all the way around.
By that time, the father and I had spoken more than I remember speaking with any of our other customers. I kind of knew him. He was appreciative, and truly proud to have given his daughter the Gift of Name Change. He told me he didn’t have much more energy to spend and was happy to see his daughter’s smiling face. For him, and for that family at that time, it was like climbing Mount Everest. And he had made it happen. His daughter got to have the Name she wanted for so many years, and he got to see her get it. Good stuff.
EZ Name Change is a California Name Change Specialist. It is Low-Cost and yet the highest rated Name Change Service anywhere in California. EZ Name Change is a Registered and Bonded Legal Document Assistant (LDA #564), and exclusively helps with Legal Name Change for Adults, Children and Families living in California. BBB A+ Rating, 5-Stars with Yelp, Facebook, Google and BBB. Start Your Child’s Legal Name Change Now?