Divorce Laws in Louisiana Regarding Name Changes

By Elizabeth Rayne

Although many spouses decide to change their names when getting married, Louisiana does not require anyone to do so. During the marriage, spouses are permitted to use their spouse's last name although their name is not technically changed. After getting a divorce, women do not need to follow the typical legal requirements for a name change, but can acquire confirmation from the court that indicates they are no longer using their ex-spouse's surname.

Choice of Surnames

In Louisiana, a spouse may use her birth surname, or spouse's surname, before or after the divorce. The state does not require either spouse to take the other spouse's last name; instead, a spouse may keep her name or use a hyphenated one. Although rare, a male spouse may change his name as well. After a divorce, a former spouse may return to her birth name, keep her ex-spouse's name or continue using a combination of names. If you do change your name after the divorce, ensure the change is also reflected on your Social Security card, driver's license and other important documents.

Name Change After Divorce

In order to change your name after a divorce, Louisiana law provides that women can avoid the normal obstacles when requesting a name change by having the court confirm the name change during the divorce proceedings. The court's confirmation will provide documentation showing your name was different only during the time of the marriage; it can also be used to confirm the name of your minor children. With respect to male spouses who changed their name during the marriage, they must file a name change petition with their parish's district court in order to return to their birth name. Having this court documentation will help in changing your name on important documents and when dealing with your bank and other financial institutions.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Petition for Divorce

In a divorce petition, women have the option of asking the court to include the name confirmation in the divorce decree, regardless of which spouse initiated the divorce. Women in Louisiana may begin to use their maiden name after a divorce is finalized, even without a court order. The order simply helps document the change, so it's easier to change your name on bank accounts, licenses and other important records.

Name Changes for Minor Children

Following a divorce, you may also want to change the name of your minor children. To do so, you must file a name change petition in your parish's district court. In most cases, both parents must sign the petition. However, you may avoid this requirement if your ex-spouse is a year behind on court-ordered child support, failed to provide support for at least three years after you were awarded custody of your child, or has failed to provide support and failed to visit or communicate with your child for at least two years.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Legal Name Changes in Texas After a Divorce
 

References

Related articles

Can a Woman Take Back Her First Husband's Name After Divorcing a Second Husband?

Name change laws vary from state to state but, typically, any adult aged 18 or older may ask the court for a name change as long as the purpose is not to defraud creditors or flee from criminal charges. If a woman wants to use her first husband's name after divorcing her second husband, the procedure will depend on whether she has used the name before and whether the divorce has been finalized.

How to Change Your Name in the State of Florida Due to Divorce

While some women are agonizing about whether to take their fiances' surnames when they marry, others wrestle with what name they wish to use after a divorce. The issue is a personal one and your own decision may turn on how long you were married and whether you have minor children bearing their father's surname. If you are terminating your marriage in Florida, you can change your name during the divorce procedure without incurring an extra dime of expense by making the request in the dissolution petition.

Legal Name Change Methods

People choose to change their names for a variety of reasons, including marriage, divorce or to share the last name of their child. The specific method you'll need to use to change your name depends on your state of residence so consult local laws before attempting to change your name. In most states, name changes are accomplished through the State Court, Superior Court or Family Court and require a petition for name change or a court order. After your name is changed through the courts and with the relevant governmental entities, you will still need to notify your bank, mortgage holder and other financial institutions of the name change.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

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 ...

How to Change Your Last Name Without the Court

Whatever your reasons for changing your last name, state laws offer several ways for you to do it. Often people want to ...

Resuming Use of Maiden Name Without Divorce

A woman often resumes the use of her maiden name after a divorce. However, you may choose to reacquire your maiden name ...

Can a Divorced Woman Keep Her Husband's Last Name?

After a divorce, a woman is free to keep her husband's last name, revert back to her maiden name or choose an entirely ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED