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. If either parent does not consent then a hearing is required. Notice of the hearing must be given to the non-consenting parent(s). Notice is usually given by Certified U.S. Mail, and thegreen return card is filed with the Court. Consent must be obtained or notice given to anyone who could be considered a parent of the child.
I JUST GOT MARRIED, HOW DO I CHANGE MY NAME?
You do not need to apply for a legal name change if you were just married. The Certified Abstract of Marriage (green paper) obtained form the Marriage Department, can be used to legally change your last name if you wish. We recommend you obtain at least five copies of the document for the BMV, Social Security Administration, banks, employers, etc.
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 may be held. At this time, hearings are conducted via Zoom.
The magistrate will review submitted documents and hear testimony to determine if:
- all of the statutory requirements have been met
- there is reasonable and proper cause to grant the requested name change
- whether both parents have consented to the name change for minors
- whether the name change is in the best interest of the child for minors
The consent of both parents is not always necessary for the approval of a name change for a minor. A magistrate may 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.
If the application is approved, the Court will provide the applicant with 4 certified copies of the Journal Entry Changing Name. If there has been a hearing, the applicant will receive these in the mail after a decisions has been issued.
What DO I DO AFTER MY NAME IS CHANGED?
Make a list of all agencies, organizations, and institutions that should be informed of the name change. These may include:
- financial institutions and creditors
- employers and schools
- social service agencies
- the BMV and Social Security Administration
- other government offices
Making a list then notifying everyone on the list helps insure that everyone 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 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.