Name Changes After Divorce & Remarriage in Georgia

By Terry White

Changing your status to “single” on Facebook is a snap. But in real life, you can’t simply click “divorced.” In Georgia, those who want to restore their name upon divorce must take additional action. A child’s name, however, cannot be changed through divorce. Don’t worry. If you forget to change your name during your divorce, you can do it anytime in Georgia.

Restoring Your Previous Name

Georgia allows a couple, upon marriage, to choose their surnames. Each spouse can keep his or her own name, take the other's surname or keep a combination of both. It naturally follows that both spouses can restore their previous name upon divorce. The most efficient way to accomplish this is within the divorce petition. Since a name change is part of the divorce, there is no additional cost.

Name Change Upon Remarriage

A divorced person, upon remarriage in Georgia, can adopt her maiden name, take her new spouse’s surname, or keep the name used during a previous marriage. For instance, Betty Smith Jones, who is divorced but planning to remarry, can keep her married name Jones if she chooses. She also has the options of taking her new spouse’s surname, combining her new spouse’s surname with Jones or reverting to her maiden name of Smith.

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

Changing a Child's Name

Georgia law does not allow a child’s name to be changed as part of a divorce proceeding. It must be done in Superior Court by filing a Petition to Change Name of Minor Child and both parents must consent. The only exceptions to the requirement of mutual consent are if one parent is deceased, abandoned the child or has not supported the child for five years. Once consent is complete, you must place notice of the name change petition in a local newspaper. If both parents live in Georgia, there is a waiting period of 30 days. If a parent lives outside Georgia, the waiting period doubles.

Going to Court for a Child

Take all legal papers with you, including your petition, proof of consent, affidavit from newspaper confirming publication of notice, and a final order for name change. The judge will usually handle your case in chambers, where you will be placed under oath. The judge will ask your reasons for requesting the name change. If approved, the judge will sign the final order. Once you have a certified copy of the final order, you can amend the child’s name on his or her birth certificate.

Tell the Bureaucrats

It is critical after marriage or divorce to inform the Driver Services Department and Social Security Administration of your new name. Georgia requires that the name on your Social Security card match the name on your driver’s license. If not, the state can cancel your driver’s license.


If you forget to change your name during a divorce, you can change it at any time by filing a petition for a name change. The steps involved are similar to those required for changing the name of a minor.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Name Change Requirements in the State of Illinois


Related articles

Can I Make My Ex Wife Change Her Last Name?

Although no law in the United States requires a woman to take on her husband's surname when she marries, it is a popular tradition. Once a woman legally changes her name through marriage, the name is hers to keep. This is true even if she and her husband divorce.

Divorce Laws in Louisiana Regarding Name Changes

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.

California Requirements to Legally Change a Person's Name

People change their names for a variety of reasons, including marriage, divorce, or adoption. Changing your name in the state of California generally requires a petition for name change, and a court order if you are changing the name of a minor. Name changes are filed in the Superior Court of the county in which you reside.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Laws on Name Changes Involving Marriages in Georgia

Traditionally, a woman changed her last name to her husband's name when they married. However, traditions are changing ...

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 ...

Minor Child Name Change Laws in Michigan

There are many acceptable reasons to change a child’s legal name. The most common are marriage, remarriage or adoption. ...

How to Change My Granddaughter's Last Name

Life expectancy in the U.S. has increased over the past century. As a result, more grandparents live to influence the ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED