How to Legally Change a Child's Name in Alabama

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Adoption is just one of the reasons a parent may wish to change the name of her child. A man may discover he is the father of a child and wish to make the name change to establish paternity and for the child to share his last name. Alabama has certain guidelines you must follow to make the name change legal. Changing the name of a minor is a simple task if you have the proper documentation required by law. This will save you and the court both time and money.

Make sure the child is a legal resident in the county before requesting a name change. Typically, six to 12 months is required.

Provide the court with a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate, as suggested by the Montgomery County Alabama website. If you do not have a copy, you can obtain one by calling the Center of Health Statistics in that county (334-206-5418).

Get the father’s signature on a consent form to obtain the legal name change. If the father is unknown or cannot be located, an attorney must handle the name change.

Present a picture identification if you are the parent. You can use a driver’s license or military ID card.

Obtain your child’s signature if he is 14 years old or older. He must consent on the legal document.

Pay a fee to the court for the legal name change. In March of 2010, this filing fee was $15. An additional fee of $4 will be collected for a certified copy of the document.

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About the Author

Chelsea Fitzgerald covers topics related to family, health, green living and travel. Before her writing career, she worked in the medical field for 21 years. Fitzgerald studied education at the University of Arkansas and University of Memphis.