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Name change is often done as part of another proceeding. For example, dissolutions of marriage, adoptions and foreign recognitions of adoption incorporate a change of name along with the underlying action. Usually, this change of name is pled in the original pleadings and placed in the final judgment. Individuals may then take a certified copy of the judgment to whichever authority needed in order to have his or her name changed on the desired document.
A person may change his or her name is through a separate legal action, which is governed by the Missouri Rules of Civil Procedure 95 (which contains Rules 95.01 through 95.05) and sections 527.270 through 527.290, Missouri Revised Statutes. This action is initiated by filing a verified petition in the circuit court of the county of petitioner’s residence.
The verified petition must include the following:
1. The present name of petitioner and the name desired;
2. The reason for such desired change;
3. That the petitioner is a resident of the county in which the change of name is sought;
4. The date and place of birth of petitioner and petitioner's father's name and mother's maiden name;
5. If petitioner is married, the name of petitioner's spouse, and if petitioner has children, the names and ages of each and their place(s) of residence;
6. If petitioner's name has previously been changed, when and where and by what court;
7. Whether any action for money is pending against petitioner and, if so, the style of the case and the court in which it is pending; and
8. That the change of name will not be detrimental to any other person.
When a minor seeks to change his or her name, the basic proceedings are the same. However, a few additional requirements must be satisfied. First, the petition is filed by the minor’s next friend. In addition, both parents must file a consent to the name change. In the event one of the parents does not file a consent, at least thirty (30) days must elapse before the hearing on the petition, and a copy of the petition with a notice of the hearing date must be served by registered or certified mail to the last known address of the nonconsenting parent. Proof of service is obtained by the certificate of the clerk that he or she mailed a copy of the petition and notice by registered or certified mail.
Once an order of the name change is signed by the court, the name change must be published to become effective. The order for name change must be published once a week for three consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the change of name was granted within twenty (20) days after the order of the court is made. If no such newspaper exists, then it should be published in a newspaper designated by the court.
After the publication has run, the newspaper will provide an affidavit of publication which must be filed with the court within ten (10) days after the date of last publication. A certified copy of the order or Judgment will then be available for the individual to take wherever is needed to prove the change of name.
If it is necessary to change the name of the individual on the birth certificate, it is necessary to send a certified copy of the judgment of name change to the State government division that is responsible for maintaining the birth records along with any applicable fees.
To make an appointment, please call me at 816-256-5440.
I am available to help you in the following Missouri counties: Jackson, Clay, Platte, Cass , Buchanan, Andrew, Davies, Caldwell, DeKalb, Clinton, Atchison, Holt, and Nodaway.
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