Name Change Illinois Cost, Fees & Steps
How Much Does It Cost To Change Your Name In Illinois?
Your Name is an essential part of your identity and who you are, in real life. The Name Change, or Name Authentication process, is therefore VERY personal and important. However, it isn’t easy, simple or free to do. Getting accurate and complete information about Name Change costs isn’t easy either. This page will give you the Illinois Name Change Cost information you need; Details, itemization and totals.
Itemized Illinois Name Change Fees
A Legal Name Change document, like the Certified Copy of an Order For Name Change, is proof of your Legal Name. You’ll get that Order following your approval Hearing, upon approval by a Circuit Court judge. The Certified Copy is what Social Security, Illinois Secretary of State (Real ID), US Secretary of State (Passport) and the other agencies and offices all want to see. The Name Change Hearing doesn’t have costs, but there are 4 Steps that do.
The 4 Steps are:
- Prepare a Petition
- File the Petition in Court
- Give Legal Notice
- Get Certified Copy(s) and Change Your Records
Name Change Illinois Cost & Steps
1. Name Change Petition Cost in Illinois
We charge $190 for Full Service Name Change, which includes preparation of your complete Name Change Petition, filing it at the proper court, arranging all the required advertising and setting up your approval Hearing. If you have a lot of extra time, you can do all this yourself, but it’s a little complicated and will take you a chunk of time to figure it all out and then get it done.
There are between 3 and 7 different forms to complete correctly. There may be other forms, depending on which county you live in now and the type of Name Change you have. The Court may also offer free legal help to complete all the documents if you need that. To tackle this yourself, without professional help, budget some hours and prepare for going in some wrong directions or having to do things over again. If you do have EZ Name Change help you, it will be a much smoother experience, and take A LOT less of your time. See what others say about EZ Name Change
2. Name Change Petition Filing Fee in Illinois
Name Change Court Costs are the biggest single part of the total costs for Legal Name Change in Illinois. Each Illinois Circuit Court sets their own filing fees. Court Filing charges are usually in the $300 dollar range, and up to $388 in Cook County. Court Filing costs must be paid, regardless of who prepares your Petition, unless you can’t afford to pay those filing costs, in which case you can request an Application for Waiver of Court Fees form. We can help with those if you let us know.
Court Filing Fees are paid in full when your Petition gets filed. Each Circuit Court changes their filing fee from time to time, so you need to get the current charges from us or from the Circuit Court to get the current costs. With an approved Fee Waiver Application, the court charges can be waived entirely.
3. Giving Legal Notice – Name Change Publication In Newspaper Cost
Right after filing the Petition, required advertising must be started and paid for. The cost for Advertising is around $100 to $135 on average. Some Counties will have a little lower cost and others a little more.
Advertising is a requirement under Illinois Compiled Statutes(see 735 ILCS 5/21-103). To comply, a Name Change Ad must be published in a qualified legal notice newspaper once a week for 3 consecutive weeks. Then Proof of that Publication must be filed into your case in proper form. It’s not a choice, but there are exceptions for certain dangerous situations as described in those statutes. If we help you with Full Service, we’ll take care of all the Advertising responsibilities, including paying the newspaper in full.
If you’re going to try this all yourself, you’ll need to contact a number of newspapers to find one that’s qualified, and to shop around for best pricing. With Full Service, we’ll be using the most cost-effective, reliable and qualified one. Before you File your Petition, you need to choose the newspaper you’ll be using.
Don’t expect your judge to Grant your Order For Name Change unless a Proof of Publication is properly filed, in proper form, prior to your Hearing decision.
* No Costs for a Name Change Hearing
There are no costs to schedule, attend or appear at your Hearing. All related costs are paid for things that must happen before and after the Hearing.
4. Certified Copy of Name Change in Illinois
Upon approval at your Hearing, your judge will sign an Order For Name Change. After the Hearing, you can get a Certified Copy(s) of that Order from the Circuit Court Clerk. Each Certified Copy costs $5 to $10, depending on your County, and you can get as many as you want.
A Certified Copy is an Official Record, created by an authorized Court employee, and is certified to be a true copy of the Original Court Order on file at that Circuit Courthouse. If you make a copy of a certified copy, the regular copy DOES NOT have the same authority or effect and may not be accepted by certain ID Agencies. The Certified Copy IS universally accepted as proof of Your Legal Name from that point forward.
If you need to update your Name with Social Security, Illinois Secretary of State, Your Bank or Employer, Professional Licensing, etc, you will be asked to show them a Certified Copy of your Order For Name Change. Each of those places will likely give you your Certied Copy back after making their own copy or notes about it. You usually can get your Certified Copies right after your judge signs your Decree. You can get other ones even years later but only from the same courthouse. With an approved Fee Waiver, they may be free.
Summary – Average Name Change Illinois Cost
DIY Cost to Change Name in Illinois
To do this process yourself will cost about $500. You can do it, but it’s not going to be simple or fast. There are more than $190 worth of reasons that customers give us 5-Stars over many years
With EZ Name Change Full Service
It’s an extra $190 to have EZ Full Service smoothe you through the Legal Name Change process. We’re a licensed, bonded Legal Document Assistant, Legal Name Change Specialists with more than 15,000 people we’ve already helped.
A representative total, total for Full Service is $ 688 – That includes Court Filing Fees ($388). EZ Full Service ($190), and the Newspaper ($110). This total is the real current total for Cook County, but other counties will be a little different due to Court Filing and Advertising Fee differences. Add another $20 for Certified Copies, which you pay directly to the Circuit Court when you get them after your Hearing, upon approval.
There is no charge for updating your Social Security Account. To update your Driver’s License with the Secretary of State, there’s a $5 charge. To update your Passport or get one with your New Legal Name, there is only an extra charge if you are not also renewing or applying for a new Passport. To update your Illinois birth certificate, there’s a charge of $15. Most other places do not have a Fee for updating ID or Official Records, but check with each one to learn what they require.