General Name Change FAQs

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about Name Change After Marriage or Divorce.

I Changed My Mind – Can I still Change My Married Name?


The rules are different depending on if it’s Name Change after Marriage or Divorce. As for when it’s for after Marriage the License/Certificate Rules are strict. You get a lot of options to change your name when you get married. But After you fill out and turn in the license, they don’t let you change what you put on it. See these posted rules for Alameda County, for example.

You can use the Superior Court Petition process to change your name to any name you choose (see California Code of Civil Procedure, Sections 1275-1279.5). For more information and details about how to add or take off a “hyphen”, or take your husband or wife’s last name, or make other marriage related changes to your name after marriage, see this short article about these options.

I’m Divorced. Is There a Simple Way I Can Retake My Maiden Name?


If you went through divorce in California, you should be able to file a motion in that divorce case by using Form FL-395. If you want us to do this for you inexpensively, click here for more information.

Using this process will get you a new court order re-establishing your Maiden Name as your New Legal Name. It’s commonly called a Legal Name Change when you get a court ordered Name Change after marriage or divorce.

You can also file a Petition for Change of Name, whether you were divorced or not. Either of these ways will get you a court order and a fully legal Name Change. If you didn’t go through divorce or don’t want to use it to get a new legal name change, click here for information and guidance to get your name change done.

How Do I Change My Child’s Name After My Marriage or Re-marriage?


To get a Name Change after marriage or divorce, or re-marriage, for Your Child…You can Petition to Change Your Child’s Name and get a Legal Name Change Court Order. A court order will be accepted at your child’s school and all other government offices for registration, account and identification record changes.

Click here to get more information about legal name change for your child. Click here to start legal name change for your child.

How Much Will it Cost to Change My Name After Marriage?


If you didn’t change your name when you got married and now you want to take your spouses last name or a variation of it, the cost to legally Name Change after marriage or divorce is the same as it would be to change your name for any other reason. You will just file a Petition in Superior Court in California and, upon approval by a judge, get a court order legally changing your name. For a short article about the Name Change Costs, including an itemization and totals, click here. Using this method, you can change any part of your name, or every part of your name…it’s not limited to just Last Name Changes.

If you want to change your name after divorce and just want to take Your Maiden Name Back, the cost is much less IF you have a copy of your final judgment or Decree. You can do this yourself by filing an Application in your divorce case or, we can help you if your divorce case was in California

Can a Man Change His Name After Marriage?


Yes. In 9 states now, including California, men can now get a Name Change after marriage or divorce in the same way that women have always been able to do. They can also Change their Names in the same way as their spouses when getting married if a Wedding License is used. Here’s a short article with more details about how it’s done and what restrictions apply.