The new year can be a time for turning over a new leaf, and it may be a time when you are considering adopting a new legal name. Whether you are looking to share a last name with a partner, honor a loved one, adjust your name to reflect your gender identity, reconnect with recently discovered family, correct errors on your birth certificate, or just plain refresh your identity, we are a collaborative family law firm that can help you petition for a new legal name.
A New Legal Name Requires a Court Judgment
You may not realize that the process of petitioning for a new legal name is a court process. In fact, section 68.07 of the Florida Statutes lays out the legal requirement to change your name and what must be filed with the court. Under the name change law, you must swear under oath whether, among other things, the following apply to you:
- Your name has been previously changed by a court;
- You have filed for bankruptcy;
- A court has entered a money judgment against you;
- You have been arrested;
- You have been convicted of a felony;
- Your civil rights have been suspended and, if so, if they have been restored;
- A final judgment to change your name would infringe on the property rights of others; and
- You are seeking to change your name for an illegal or ulterior purpose.
Keep in mind that, even if the answer is yes to some of these items, you likely can still get a name change. However, it is important to speak with a name change attorney to check before you begin spending money on the process. We at Family Diplomacy offer a free 10 minute session if you want to discuss whether you are eligible to change to a new legal name.
Where to Petition for a New Name
Section 68.07 specifies that you must file for a name change in the county in Florida in which you reside. It does not matter whether you were born outside of the state or even outside of the country. Regardless, we can help you identify the court in your county where you should apply. Further, we can guide you through each step of the process.
Congratulations on your decision to apply for a new legal name. We want to be the firm to help you. Our firm assists Floridians around the state petition for a name change. The first step to find out how is to call us at (813) 443-0615 or clicking the button below.