How to Legally Change a Child's Last Name in Florida

By Beverly Bird

Florida makes changing your child’s name a relatively easy process or a difficult one, depending on whether you have the consent of her other parent. If you don’t, you’ll have to jump through a few extra legal hoops. Either way, a judge must approve your request, and you’ll need a court order.

Step 1

Take your child to your local police department to have her fingerprinted. Call ahead to explain what you need so an officer can welcome her and alleviate any fears she might have. Not all Florida counties require this, so check with your local circuit county court first.

Step 2

Access a “Petition for Change of Name (Minor Child(ren))” from Florida’s state court website. It’s interactive, so you can fill in the blanks online and print out a finished copy. Take it to a notary public to sign it and have your signature notarized.

Get help changing your legal name. Learn More

Step 3

Attach a copy of your child’s fingerprints to the petition, if your court requires it. Take it to the circuit court in the county where you live and file it with the clerk. Pay any fees associated.

Step 4

Serve a copy of your petition on your child’s other parent. Florida requires that you have your local sheriff or a private process server deliver it to him. If you don’t know his whereabouts, tell the clerk at the time you file your petition. Ask about your county’s rules for constructive service. You may have to serve him by newspaper notice or by mail at his last known address.

Step 5

Contact your child’s other parent, if possible, to find out if he will consent to the name change. If he does, ask him to complete a “Consent for Change of Name (Minor Child(ren)).” This form is also available on the state’s judicial website. File the consent with the same court where you filed your petition.

Step 6

Call the court to schedule a hearing date. If your child’s other parent has not consented to the name change, the court will give him time to object in writing.

Step 7

Access a “Final Judgment of Change of Name (Minor Child(ren)),” also available from the state’s website. Fill in the top portion where it asks for the basic information about your case. Leave the rest blank.

Step 8

Take the judgment with you when you attend the scheduled hearing. If the judge grants your request, he will complete the rest of the judgment and give you a signed, certified copy, allowing the name change.

Step 9

Go online to the website of the Florida Department of Health and access an “Application for Amendment to Florida Birth Certificate.” Complete the application and send it, along with a copy of your photo ID and your certified court order, to Florida Vital Statistics, Amendment Section, P.O. Box 210, Jacksonville, Florida, 32231-0042.

Get help changing your legal name. Learn More
How to Change a Child's Last Name to My Married Name

References

Related articles

Florida Laws Regarding Relocation After Divorce

No law can prevent an adult from moving if she wants to. If you were divorced in Florida, you can pack up and relocate any time you like -- but you may not be able to take your children. Florida’s laws regarding the relocation of children away from their other parent are specific. You can’t move beyond 50 miles without the express consent of either your spouse or the court.

Ohio Laws on Relocation & Child Custody After Divorce

Under Ohio law, a custodial parent wishing to relocate to a difference state must receive consent from the other parent or the court. As a result of this requirement, you cannot just pick up and relocate to another state with your child. There are requirements, as required by Ohio law, that you must meet before the move may occur or the court may intervene and order you and your child back to Ohio.

Do Minors Need Parental Permission Under the Pennsylvania Name Change Laws?

Pennsylvania law provides for name changes of minors either by changing the minor's birth certificate or by a court order. Pennsylvania’s name change processes require parental consent in most situations. However, there is no Pennsylvania law requiring parental consent for a court-ordered name change. Further, Pennsylvania courts have granted a child’s name change without parental consent, for example, in cases where the child is no longer in his parents’ legal custody.

Doing the right thing has never been easier.

Related articles

How to Change My Child's Last Name If I Have Sole Custody

Your legal right to change your child’s last name does not depend on your custody arrangement. Even if you have sole ...

How to Legally Change the Middle Name of a Child

Depending on how radically you want to change your child’s middle name, the process can be easy or complicated. If ...

How to Legally Change Your Last Name in Kentucky

In Kentucky, any person over the age of 18 who has lived in Kentucky for at least six months may petition the local ...

How to Change a Name After Marriage in Colorado

Colorado state law is based on English common law, which allows anyone to change his name without legal process. ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED