How to Change Your Name After Your Divorce

Divorce means establishing a new identity.  For some, this may include a name change. There are many reasons why one person might decide to keep their married name, and another might prefer to drop it.  At the end of the day, it is optional. The process is different if you decide to do this before divorce or later in life.

Before or During Your Divorce

If you decide to change your name during the divorce proceedings, be sure to let your attorney know.  In Missouri, it’s as simple as including the new name in your Judgment for Dissolution filed with the court.

After You’re Divorced

If you did not elect to change your name during the divorce process, you can still do so after the divorce. Here are the steps are:

  1. File a petition with the court of the county where you reside, requesting the name change.
  2. Attend the scheduled hearing.
  3. Be granted an order from the court.
  4. Within 20 days of the hearing, publish the name change in a local newspaper at least three times to make it public record.
  5. Within 10 days after the last publication, send proof of the published name-change to the court.

What’s Next?

The certified copy of your divorce decree or the order for a name change will be the official document used at the DMV when obtaining a new license.  In addition, you’ll need to have it changed on the following:

Less urgently, you’ll also need to have it changed at your bank, with your credit card companies, and a handful of other places unique to you and your life.  If you have questions on the process or require assistance filing the petition, we’re here to help!

With a combined 30 years in family law, the attorneys at Jones Family Law Group, LLC, will provide the legal guidance you need. Be sure to follow us on social media, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Share our articles with others! For a confidential consultation, contact us today.