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Tallahassee Name Change Attorneys

How to Change Your Legal Name in Tallahassee, FL

Many people feel that their given name doesn't suit them or accurately reflect who they are for various reasons. Changing your legal name can help you take control of your life and feel confident presenting yourself to others.

At The Virga Law Firm, P.A., our Tallahassee name change lawyers will work with you to get you the legal name you deserve. Contact us online or via phone at (850) 307-5211.

Changing Your Name as an Adult in FL

If you want to change your name as an adult in Tallahassee, Florida, you'll need to complete the following steps:

  • Background check. You'll need to submit a state and national fingerprint-based background check. If you check in with your local law enforcement office, they should be able to refer you to an authorized background check provider who can help you with this process. The state needs this information to verify your identity and ensure you qualify for a name change.
  • Nonlawyer disclosure. If somebody other than a lawyer is helping you apply for your name change, that person must complete a "Disclosure From a Nonlawyer" form before you can continue with the name change process.
  • Petition for Change of Name. Once you have your background check and any other individuals affiliated with the process have completed the appropriate disclosures, you can submit a Petition for Change of Name (Adult) to your court. You must sign this form in the presence of a notary public before submitting it to the circuit court in your county.
  • Submit your filing and pay the necessary fees. Generally, you can expect to pay somewhere between $200 and $300 in legal fees as part of filing your Petition for Change of Name with your circuit court.
  • Attend your hearing and fill out your Final Judgment of Change of Name form. Once you've filed your petition, you'll need to attend a hearing. At the hearing, the court will confirm that everything is in order and determine whether you can legally change your name. As part of the court's decision, you'll need to fill out various parts of a Judgment of Change of Name form, which you can do before attending your hearing.

If the court approves your name change request, congratulations! Your name will be legally changed. You must then report your new name to the Social Security Administration (SSA) to have your name on your driver's license changed.

After reporting your name change to the SSA, you can visit your closest Florida DHSMV to request an updated driver's license.

By visiting the Florida Department of State website or submitting a new Voter Registration Form, you can also have your voter registration changed to reflect your new legal name.

How to Change Your Name as a Minor in Florida

Changing your name as a minor in Florida requires taking most of the same steps as changing your name as an adult.

However, both parents may need to be involved in the process. If one parent is helping their child file name change forms and fills out a Nonlawyer Disclosure form, for example, the other parent may then have to fill out a Consent for Change of Name (Minor Child(ren)) form.

If one parent does not consent to the name change, the parent who does consent must serve the nonconsenting parent with a copy of the Petition for Change of Name (Minor Child(ren)) form they filled out, as well as information on when the court will hold the name change hearing. A third party such as a sheriff or private process server must serve the nonconsenting parent.

At the name change hearing, both parents - as well as the child - will present their arguments to the court for why the child's name should or should not be changed. The court will then make a final judgment, and the case will proceed as normal.

As with most cases, if one party disagrees with the court's decision, they may be able to appeal the outcome of the case.

Changing Your Name in Florida As a Result of Divorce or Marriage

If you wish to change your last name as the result of a divorce or marriage, you will have the opportunity to do so on your marriage or divorce forms.

On marriage forms, you can enter a new last name in the section of the form dedicated to your spouse's general personal information.

If you wish to change your last name during divorce, you must wait until your divorce is finalized. You can then use the divorce decree issued at the end of your divorce to dictate that you are changing your last name to your pre-marriage last name.

Our Tallahassee name change attorneys can help you find the best path forward in your name change case. To schedule a consultation with our team, contact us online or via phone at (850) 307-5211.

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