Complete the two required forms – "Petition for Change of Name" and "Order to Show Cause for Change of Name" – and make extra copies of both forms.
Navigate to the California Courts website or use your local telephone book to look up the branch of the California Superior Court closest to where you reside in San Diego. Review the requirements outlined in the form instructions to ensure your paperwork is accurate and complete. Submit the forms to the local court and pay the required filing fee.
Select an approved newspaper from the list provided by the court clerk and arrange to have the newspaper publish a copy of the court form "Order to Show Cause for Change of Name." The purpose of this form is to notify the public that a hearing has been scheduled for your name change request. The notice must appear in the newspaper once a week for at least four weeks prior to the hearing date set by the court. If the hearing date is changed, you may be required to run the notice for another four weeks.
Bring the copies of your completed forms and copies of the published notice to your hearing at your local branch of the California Superior Court. Review your documents and be prepared to answer any questions about your request for a name change.
Make copies of the court’s official decree approving your name change and give these copies to your banks, credit card issuers and government agencies, such as the Social Security Administration and DMV, to prove your name has been legally changed. You will also need to update other records to reflect your name change such as utility bills, retirement accounts, grant deeds and tax records.