Changing Your Last Name After a Divorce in Michigan

Many women assume their husband’s last name when they get married. As a result, when they get divorced from their husband, most want to change it back to their maiden name. There are two options: you can either change it back to a maiden (or any other name) or you could keep your soon-to-be-ex husband’s name. Contrary to what some people might say, you are not required to give up your ex-husband’s last name.

I have represented some men who want to force their soon to be ex-wife to change her last name. The judge does not have the power to change the wife’s last name, it has to be voluntary.

If you did want to change your name after your divorce you should state that in your complaint for divorce. There is no charge or extra steps to take if you remember to include it in the original divorce complaint.

You can petition the court to change your last name after your divorce is finalized. To do this you will have to file a new complaint for a name change, which costs more money. You will have to have your fingerprints taken and have the state police check your criminal record, you will have to publish a document in the legal news and go before the judge to have it approved.

Once you have changed your last name you should notify the United States Social Security Administration and the Michigan Secretary of State. You should notify all banks were you have accounts and credit card companies.

In short, if you’re going to change your name in Michigan, do it at the outset of the divorce. It will save you time and money.

Contact one of our Michigan Family Law attorneys for more information about changing your name in Michigan.