• Christopher M. Alexander

Can I Change My Name as Part of the Divorce?

As part of the Divorce or Dissolution process, you will have to decide whether to keep your current name or revert to a former name. Ohio law permits any person to be restored to their former name from before they were married. This includes your maiden name as well as any previous names you had by way of a prior marriage.

Once the Final Judgement and Decree of Divorce or Dissolution is filed with the Court, request a certified copy from the Clerk of Court. Take the certified Decree to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and the Social Security Administration Office in-person. Your name should be updated in your presence and you should be provided new identifying documents before you leave.

If you have a professional license, certificate or accreditation, contact your governing body (e.g. for nurses the Ohio Board of Nursing and for teachers the Ohio Department of Education). With the Decree, your new Ohio driver’s license and social security card, the update can be completed through the mail most times.

If your name was not changed as part of your Divorce or Dissolution, you may still request to change your name by filing an Application for Change of Name of Adult in the Probate Court for the county in which you reside. In Probate Court, you are not limited to a previous name. So long as the Judge affirms that there is a reasonable and proper cause for the change of name and that the change is not done for an improper purpose, your Application should be granted.

If you have questions regarding changing your name after a Divorce or Dissolution, call Christopher M. Alexander at (513) 228 – 1100, mobile (513) 226 – 8489, or online at

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