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Should You Change Your Last Name When Your Divorce is Final?
For many women, deciding whether to revert to their maiden name in connection with a divorce is a deeply personal matter. Often, both options carry their own pros and cons. If you are thinking about changing your name after you get divorced, here are some thoughts to keep in mind.
Considerations for Changing Your Name During a Divorce
Many women have different motives for either choosing to retain their married name or changing back to their maiden name after a divorce. As you weigh your options, it is important to make your own decision. Obviously, your decision impacts much more than just the name printed on your driver’s license, so you are right to give it serious consideration.
To the extent you find these helpful, here are a few of the factors women most commonly consider when deciding whether to change their name when they get divorced:
Do you want to retain the same last name as your children?If you do not have children this is clearly a non-issue, but for many women this can be a deciding factor.
Do you have an established professional or community reputation? Whether you are ending a long marriage or are fairly new to your career or community, it is perfectly legitimate to consider how changing your name could impact your recognition and reputation.
Do you want a fresh start? If your marriage has become acrimonious, you may simply feel like a fresh start. Changing your name can have both practical and psychological impacts.
Again, these are just possible considerations. If you would like more information to assist in deciding whether to change your name, our attorneys are here to help.
When Should You Request a Name Change?
It is important to note that you can change your legal name either during or after your divorce. As a result, you do not need to rush your decision. However, if you have made up your mind to revert to your maiden name, doing so during your divorce can save costs and streamline the process.
Changing Your Name During Your Divorce
If you are ready to change your name, you can request to include a formal name change as part of your final divorce decree. This is fairly straightforward, and it does not require any additional filing fees.
Changing Your Name After Your Divorce
If you decide you want to change your name after your divorce is final, you can still do so, but you will need to seek to else file a name change petition with the court. This option involves modest costs and can take some time. But, you should still be able to change your name if that is what you have decided to do.