Legally changing your name in Utah is a fairly straightforward process and doesn’t have a lot of requirements. An adult can file a motion for a name change for a number of reasons including getting married or divorced, changing their gender, or simply because they want a different name.
In order to file for a name change, a person must have lived in the county where filing the petition for at least a year and be 18 or older.
How Much Does a Name Change Cost?
The filing fee for most name change petitions is $360. However, if the change was ordered in a divorce decree, there is no fee, and since it was already ordered, a petition doesn’t need to be filed. There is no petition or hearing needed to change a name due to marriage. A certified copy of the marriage license can be used to change your name on official documents such as your driver’s license and Social Security card.
Are There any Restrictions that could Prevent Me from Legally Changing My Name?
There are some situations where an individual cannot change their name in Utah. A person cannot change their name if they are on parole or probation, involved in a lawsuit, or barred as a sex offender or child abuse offender.
A petition can also be denied if the name change were for an unworthy motive or to commit fraud, or to avoid creditors or criminal charges. It can also be denied if the name is deemed to be offensive or bizarre by the court.
Is the Filing Process Difficult?
The process itself is simple. Before filing the petition, the petitioner must obtain a certification showing that they are not on the child abuse or sex offender registry. Once that is obtained, the petitioner can file, and a hearing is set. The hearing is usually set about a month out and the judge signs the order at the hearing or very soon after. From start to finish, the process can be done within about six weeks.
What Other Forms do I Need?
Once an individual has received the certification from the offender registry, the petition can be filed. In addition to the certification and petition, a request for hearing and proposed order need to be filed with the court.
Will I Have to Go to Court?
Yes, a hearing is required. The court will ask the petitioner some questions about the request and make sure there is nothing preventing the name change. In most cases, it’s a very simple hearing with no opposing party.
Once there is a court order allowing the name change, there is quite a bit of follow up to change the name on records, accounts, and identification. The Utah State Courts has a comprehensive list including:
- Driver License Division
- Social Security Administration
- Post Office
- Health care providers
- Landlord or tenants
- Mortgage companies
- Telephone and other utility companies
- Insurance companies
- Banks and other financial institutions
- Creditors and debtors
- State and local taxing authorities
- Registrar of voters
- Public benefits agencies
- Veterans Administration
- Passport office
- DMV to change vehicle registration
- Any other institution or agency with which you have regular contact
- Utah Office of Vital Records to update your birth certificate
If you’re unsure where to start with changing your name, or need help filling out the documents, Utah Legal Coach can help you. Book an appointment today to get the help you need.