Frequently Asked Questions About Name Changes
How Do I Apply For A Minor Name Change?
The applicant for the name change of a minor must obtain the consent of the minor's parents, or notice of the hearing must be given to the non-consenting parent(s). Notice is usually given by Certified U.S. Mail (service available at any local post office) with the green card filed with the Court. Consent must be obtained or notice given to anyone who could be considered a parent of the child.
What Is The Hearing Process?
Approximately 45 days after the Application For Name Change has been filed with the Court, a hearing before a Court magistrate will be held. You will need to arrive at the Court 15 minutes prior to your hearing time. The magistrate will determine if all of the statutory requirements have been met and that there is reasonable and proper cause to grant the requested name change. The magistrate will make this determination based on the testimony at the hearing and the information submitted to the Court's file.
If the name change is for a minor, the magistrate will also determine whether both parents have consented to the name change and whether the name change is in the best interest of the child. The consent of both parents is not always necessary for the approval of a name change for a minor but a magistrate must decide, after reviewing all of the facts, that the name change is in the minor's best interest and it is reasonable and proper to change the minor's name.
Once the application is approved, the Court will provide the applicant with 4 certified copies of the Journal Entry Changing Name. The applicant should make a list of all the creditors, agencies, schools, financial institutions, employers, and government offices that need to be informed of the new name. Making a list then notifying everyone on the list helps insure that every one is informed of the name change. If the approved name change is substantially different from the name that is on the applicant's birth certificate or is for a minor, notice should be given to the Ohio Department of Health, Vital Statistics Division, if the person was born in Ohio, or the equivalent agency in the state where the person was born. The Name Change Entry does not change an Ohio birth certificate, but appends to it and becomes a part of the person's birth records if they were born in Ohio.