How to legally change your name, step by step:

  • Fill out your court forms
  • Have your forms reviewed
  • Pay your state's required filing fees
  • File your forms with the court clerk
  • Publish the Order to Show Cause for Change of Name (If Required)
  • Go to your court hearing, if necessary
  • Get your Decree Changing Name from the court

You can get name change forms online for free.

When you file your name change form, you'll have to pay the state filing fee.

How much is the cost to change your name?

The name change fee ranges from $89.95 to $450. You also may have to pay for a criminal background check.

How old do you have to be to legally change your name?

To get a legal name change, you must be at least 18 years old in most States.

How long does it take to change your name in most States?

The time for a name change can take from 8 weeks up to 3 months after filing your petition. and getting a court date.

Types of name change.

  • Adult Name Change after marriage
  • Adult Name Change after divorce
  • Child (Minor) Name Change – For any minor under eighteen (18) years of age.

Other reasons include:

  • Dislike of Birth Name
  • Gender Change
  • Entertainment Stage Name
  • Victim of domestic violence
  • State Witness Program
  • Troubled History
  • Family Fallout
  • Restoring a Former Name


Reasons why a judge would not agree to change your name:

  • The court finds that you are changing your name to commit fraud, or
  • The court finds that you are changing your name to hide from the law or for some other illegal reason.
  • The court finds that you are changing your name to escape debt liability
  • The court finds that you are changing your name in order to commit a crime
  • The court finds that you are changing your name with the intention to mislead, like taking the name of a famous person not related to you
  • Choose a confusing name that includes numerals or punctuation
  • Choose a name that would offend, intimidate, is a racial slur, or be considered obscene

Which entities or organizations you should notify after legally changing your name?

  • Schools 
  • Employers
  • Social Security Administration
  • Department of Motor Vehicles
  • Passport Office
  • Post Office
  • Telephone and Utility Companies
  • Department of Records or Vital Statistics (birth certificates issuers)
  • Banks and Other Financial Institutions
  • Creditors and Debtors
  • Insurance Agencies
  • State Taxing Authority
  • Veterans Administration
  • Registrar of Voters
  • Public Assistance (Welfare) Office

Famous people who changed their names:

Bruno Mars - Real name: Peter Gene Hernandez.

Joaquin Phoenix - Real name: Joaquin Rafael Bottom

Nicolas Cage - Real name: Nicolas Kim Coppola

Vin Diesel - Real name: Mark Sinclair Vincent

Michael Caine - Real name: Maurice Joseph Micklewhite

Kate Hudson - Real name: Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson

Elton John - Real name: Reginald Kenneth Dwight

Olivia Wilde - Real name: Olivia Jane Cockburn

John Legend - Real name: John Roger Stephens

Natalie Portman - Real name: Natalie Hershlag

Jennifer Aniston - Real name: Jennifer Linn Anastassakis

Miley Cyrus - Real name: Destiny Hope Cyrus

Iggy Azalea - Real name: Amethyst Amelia Kelly

Lana Del Rey - Real name: Elizabeth Woolridge Grant

Jamie Foxx - Real name: Eric Marlon Bishop

Nicki Minaj - Real name: Onika Tanya Maraj

Liam Neeson - Real name: William John Neeson

Adult Name Change on Social Security Card
Change Your Name on Your Social Security Card

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DISCLAIMER: provides internet content that is designed only to entertain and inform and is not to be considered professional law/legal advice. Consult a licensed attorney or law firm in your State of residence who will advise and answer all your questions and concerns about any legal issues you may have.

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