How to Legally Change Your Name in Wisconsin

By Jeff Franco J.D./M.A./M.B.A.

If you’re a Wisconsin resident and want to legally change your name, you’ll need to have a Wisconsin circuit court judge approve it. Obtaining a court’s approval will require some preliminary work on your part as there are various forms to file before you can appear before a judge.

If you’re a Wisconsin resident and want to legally change your name, you’ll need to have a Wisconsin circuit court judge approve it. Obtaining a court’s approval will require some preliminary work on your part as there are various forms to file before you can appear before a judge.

Step 1

Obtain a Petition for Name Change form. All Wisconsin circuit courts require the filing of the petition to initiate a name change case. Prepare the petition on Form CV-450 -- or CV-455 for someone under 14 years old -- and have it notarized. You can obtain copies of both forms, as well as any other forms you need throughout the process, on the Wisconsin Court System website.

Get help changing your legal name. Learn More

Step 2

Prepare a Notice and Order for Name Change Hearing on Form CV-460.

Step 3

Fill out an Order for Name Change on Form CV-470. You will complete only the top portion of this form and the judge fills out and signs the bottom portion if she approves your name change. If you need assistance preparing this form, the clerk in the court where you file may be able to do it for you. However, not every court requires the order, so you should check with your local circuit court first.

Step 4

File Forms CV-460, CV-470 and the petition in your local Wisconsin circuit court. You file the forms at a circuit court located in the county where you reside. All but six counties have at least one circuit court branch, but if you live in Buffalo, Pepin, Florence, Forest, Shawano or Menominee County, your local circuit court may be located in a different county than where you live.

Step 5

Publish the notice and order in a local newspaper. Once your name change hearing date is scheduled, Wisconsin law requires that you publish a notice of the hearing in a newspaper for three weeks. The newspaper must be published at least once per week in the city or town where you live.

Step 6

Go to the hearing. You will appear before a circuit court judge who will ask to see proof of your notice publication, which is commonly referred to as the “Affidavit of Publication.” Before signing the Order for Name Change, which is necessary to legally change your name, the judge may also ask you a number of questions about the information you reported on the petition – so be prepared.

Step 7

File the signed Order for Name Change. The procedures can vary depending on which circuit court branch you’re in, but in all cases, you must take the signed order and have it filed with the court – usually in the clerk’s office.

Get help changing your legal name. Learn More
How to Change Names Legally in Illinois

References

Related articles

How to Change Your Baby's Last Name in Illinois

Illinois allows you to change a baby's name as long as you're the baby's parent, have custody of the baby and have lived in Illinois for at least six months. The court must find that the change of name is beneficial for the child and will consider the wishes of both parents. If both parents consent to changing the baby's name, the process is relatively simple and handled through the Illinois Circuit County Court of the baby's residence.

What if I Didn't Request a Name Change in Divorce Papers in Maryland?

In a divorce, you may want to change your last name back to your maiden name. However, if you forgot to request a name change in your divorce papers, or you simply changed your mind after your divorce became final, you can still request a name change in Maryland. You must complete the appropriate form and receive a court order for the name change to be recognized legally.

How to Legally Change My Name in Missouri

Missouri law allows you to change your name as long as you're not doing so to harm another person's interest. For example, if you're changing your name to avoid paying a bill, the court will not grant the order, as it's detrimental to the creditor. A name change in Missouri is handled through the circuit court of the Missouri county the person lives in. You must file a petition, attend a hearing and run a legal ad notifying persons of your desire to change your name to receive a name change order in the state.

Doing the right thing has never been easier.

Related articles

How to Change Your Name in Idaho

A person 18 years of age or older may change their legal name by following the proper district court procedures. You ...

How to Legally Change a Name in New Mexico

Legally changing your name in New Mexico is a straightforward and simple process. You need only be 14 years of age to ...

How to Legally Change Your Name in San Diego County

If you are an adult residing in San Diego, California, you can legally change your name, but you’ll need to ...

How to Change Your Legal Name in New Jersey

Some people are lucky enough to love the name they are given at birth. But if you aren't one of them, a name change may ...

Browse by category