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You must have legal custody of your child to ask for a name change. If parents cannot agree on a child’s name, the court will decide based on the best interest of the child. If a child is born out-of-wedlock, the court may consider other factors.
You must file the following forms:
For children born to unmarried parents, you will need a certified copy of an adjudication of paternity or a voluntary acknowledgement of the parents. If you do not live with the child’s other parent, you will need to send a copy of the petition to them by certified mail, return receipt requested. If you do not know the other parent’s current address, send it to the last known address. If it cannot be delivered by the post office, file the returned envelope unopened with the court.
You can file your request to change the name of your child at your local Probate and Family Court. If you are seeking a name change for a minor who is the subject of a pending proceeding in the Juvenile Court, you may file for a name change in that Juvenile Court.
You may be required to publish a citation in the newspaper if you do not get actual notice of the petition to the other parent. Otherwise, file the green certified return receipt postcard with the court showing the copy of the petition was delivered.