How to Legally Change a Name in Louisiana

By Caryn Anderson
Petition the courts.

gavel image by Cora Reed from Fotolia.com

There are many reasons you may wish to file a petition for a name change. Reasons include marriage, divorce, religious motivation, adding or removing a family name, sex assignment surgery, nationality reasons and simply not liking your current name. Name changes are not allowed for the purposes of attempting to commit fraud, violate any other person's rights or attempting to evade legal proceedings. Following a few steps will simplify the process of legally changing your name.

Obtain a "Petition for Name Change." Forms can be downloaded online from various legal websites for a price; however, it is advisable to call or visit the office of your county clerk in your parish to obtain the form and any additional instructions you may need. The form should be filled out in its entirety, either by you or your lawyer.

Submit your Petition for Name Change to the country court clerk in your parish. Louisiana law requires that anyone seeking to alter a vital record also produce proper identification. You must present one primary document or two forms of secondary documents.

Wait to receive the final judgment from the courts approving your petition. Then notify all applicable parties. You can apply for a new birth certificate by filing an "Application to Amend Certificate of Birth" along with a copy of the court-approved name change judgment. You should also update your information with credit card companies, utility companies, banks, Social Security agency, doctors, Internal Revenue Service, lawyers, state tax treasurer, voter registration and your employer.

Change your name on your driver's license. You will need to go to the Office of Motor Vehicles, bring your current driver's license, approved petition supporting your name change and proof of insurance. Expect to be required to take a vision test. Minors must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

About the Author

Caryn Anderson combines extensive behind-the-scenes writing experience with her passion for all things food, fashion, garden and travel. Bitten by the travel bug at the age of 15 after a trip to Europe, Anderson fostered her love of style and fashion while living in New York City and earning her degree at New York University.

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