Name Change isn’t free or simple. If you don’t know the facts, you can waste hours and hours, and hundreds or thousands of dollars. So, find out if you need a Name Change document first. If you need this and know the costs to change your name or your child’s name California, you can get it done with confidence. Then, you’ll feel the kind of satisfaction you get from having reached a goal and accomplished something important.
The Petition- Costs to Change Name California
We charge $115 to prepare your fully Ready-To-File Petition for you. Other companies may charge more or less, but get enough information from whoever you choose to be sure they really know how to do this. You can do this yourself, for free, but it will take time to learn, and may be a frustrating experience dealing with legal forms and process if you’re not used to it. If we help you with the Petition, It will come to you, completed correctly, and ready for you to review, sign and have it filed. We mark it where you need to sign it before filing. All the required forms will be fully and correctly completed, marked for your signatures. Step-By-Step instructions, customized for Your Name Change in Your Court, and everything you need to advertise and give notice are also included. You’ll get the most cost-effective qualified newspaper selections so you won’t pay too much. We also give you a Checklist to help change your ID and records.With our Full Service, we’ll do the filing and advertising for you too. You just mail back the signed forms in our Return Envelope.
You can get all the Petition Forms you need for free from the court, and fill them all out yourself if you want. It’s a little bit complicated so be prepared to spend some hours and get it wrong a few times. You can do this yourself, but it may not be worth the time and effort. If someone says they’ll do it for you for free, better find out what their customer reviews say about them and remember “nothing’s really free“.
Next, You File The Forms – Costs to Change Name California
When you file your name change petition forms, you’ll have to pay the California state Filing fee. The cost to file name change forms in California is $435. However, a few courts charge more (up to $480) but no California Name Change Courts charge less than $435 to file a Petition for Change of Name.
The Courts change their filing rates when they need to, so you’ll need to check or get current charges from us or from the Superior Court just before you go to file to know the exact charge for your Petition. You can have Court Fee Waiver Request Forms if you can’t afford the court fees. If the court approves, all the court charges can be waived entirely. Click here to ask for a Court Fee Waiver Application.
$75 –EZ FULL SERVICE Name Change includes Filing and Advertising service (see below). If you get FULL SERVICE, you’ll also still need to pay for the Court Filing, Required Advertising and Certified Copy fees. But, then we’ll take care of the Court Filing, Advertising and Proof of Publication for you.
Then, You Advertise – Costs to Change Name California
If you do this yourself, you’ll need to find a newspaper that’s qualified for name change legal notices and shop for price. If you get Full Service, we’ll use the most cost-effective, qualified one. Before you File your Petition, you need to choose the newspaper you’ll be using. After you file and get back your approved Order to Show Cause for Change of Name Form, you must promptly run and pay for the Advertising ($90 typical price). The ads must meet the requirements in the Name Change Laws (see CCP §1277(a 1, 2 and 3)) by publishing in a qualified newspaper once a week for 4 consecutive weeks. THIS IS NOT ELECTIVE. You must use a court-qualified newspaper to do this. Prices range from $65-$500, so you’ll need to shop. Your judge won’t approve your Name Change without Proof of Publication, from the newspaper, that the Advertising was correctly done according to the law.
If 1 Parent, Give Notice – Costs to Change Name California
This is only for when one parent is Petitioning to change a child’s name without the other parent agreeing to sign the Petition with you. In this case, you’ll need to either Service Notice to the non-consenting parent or a Declaration explaining why that can’t reasonably be done. (see CCP 1277(a)(4)). Before your Hearing, you’ll need to file either Proof of Service or your Declaration at the court so the judge knows what’s up with the other parent situation. If we’re helping you with Full Service, we can help you draft a Declaration if you’re not reasonably able to Serve the other parent. We usually charge $75 for that help and need about 15 minutes of your time on the phone.
To accomplish the Service upon the non-consenting parent, you’ll spend less than $15 for Certified Mail if the other parent IS NOT in California (see CCP 415.40). If INSIDE California, you need personal service by a Sheriff, Private Process Server, or any adult (not you). Sheriff’s usually charge $40, A Private Process Server is between $50 and $125, and friends or relatives usually do it as a favor. Ask us for the costs that may apply to your situation.If the father is not in California, you can serve him by mail. With our Full Service, we’ll provide all the needed Forms and instructions to help you make this happen on time.
Finally, Certified Copy – Costs to Change Name California
A Certified Copy isn’t a regular copy. You must have 1 Certified Decree Changing Name to change essential ID and Official Records. A Certified Copy is required with Social Security, DMV, Passport, Birth Certificate, School, Banks, and some other places. Court clerks make and sell them. You usually get them on the same day as your judge signs your Decree, but you can get another one even years later but only from the same courthouse. With an approved Fee Waiver, they may be free. They cost $40.50ea and most people get 2 of them, so figure $81.
Usual Costs to Change Names in California
Do Everything Yourself —
- Between $525 and $610 (can be as much as $1000 in some Northern California Counties)
With EZ Full Service —
- Usually $715 (example includes paying the most common court and advertising costs, and the $190 for Full Service)
Everyone should be who they want to be, and we can help…at least with the Name part. Plant the right flag!