Can I Change my Name During Divorce?

Can I Change my Name During Divorce?

The Huffington Post today reported that Jennifer Lopez is formally requesting to restore her legal name from “Jennifer Muniz” to “Jennifer Lopez” in her pending divorce from singer Marc Anthony. Apparently, “Muniz” is Mr. Anthony’s legal birth name. If you have filed for divorce in Los Angeles, or if you are thinking about dissolving your marriage, then you may also be wondering if you can request to change your name at the time you file for divorce from your spouse? Or, what about during the divorce process, or even after your judgment has been entered?

California permits a husband or wife to change their name at the time they file their petition for dissolution of marriage (divorce) or nullity proceeding. The judgment for marital dissolution can order that either spouse have their former name restored, under California Family Code Section 2080.

In the event that you forgot to make this request at the time you filed for divorce, please note that a spouse can also request to restore their former name at any time before entry of a dissolution (or nullity) judgment. Therefore, if you forget to include the request in your initial pleadings or divorce documents, then you can make the request before entry of the judgment.

In addition, even if you already obtained the judgment dissolving your marriage, you can file a post-judgment ex parte application to restore your former name. You will find reference to this in California Family Code Section(s) 2080, 2082). To restore your name post-judgment, you prepare Judicial Council Form FL-395. There are no filing fees to file this form.

If you need help with your divorce or legal separation, or if you need assistance preparing a post-judgment Ex Parte Application For Restoration Of Former Name, then contact one of the Los Angeles divorce attorneys from Castellanos & Associates, APLC today. Our attorneys provide a free initial consultation and you can request to meet with one of us for a case evaluation at (323) 655-2105. Don’t hesitate! Give us a call today. We look forward to helping you.

Cite: The Huffington Post, By Cava Sleczkowski, Posted 12/06/2013, article entitled, Jennifer Lopez Requests Name Change In Divorce Documents.”