The decision to change your name or the name of your child is an intensely personal one. Mexico has implemented various laws in regarding to legal name changes. These laws help ensure that changing your name is done for proper reasons and not for the purposes of avoiding debt, criminal charges or civil obligations under the law.
Anyone who was born in Mexico and who would like to change their name must go through the government of Mexico to do so. This includes individuals that were born in Mexico but now reside outside of the country, as well as individuals who are citizens of the nation of Mexico but who are traveling, studying or working abroad. Anyone who has applied to become a resident of another country but whose citizenship of the new country has not yet been made permanent must also apply through the Mexican government. Children of Mexican citizens who were born in Mexico, but who, along with their parents, have lived a majority of their lives in another country must follow these procedures.
Proof of Cause
To legal change a name through the Mexican government, the individual who wishes to change his name must apply through the court with jurisdiction in the area where they were born. Once the formal petition for name change has been filed, the applicant must appear before a judge to show cause as to why he is requesting the name change. Valid reasons for a name change may include professional reasons, in honor of a deceased loved one or the parents simply changed their mind after legally naming the child and would like to have their preferred selection legally recognized. This prevents individuals from changing their names in order to avoid prosecution for pending criminal charges or for avoiding financial and civil obligations such as taxes or child support.
Changing Children's Names
Children who are born to citizens of Mexico are citizens of Mexico as well. Therefore, the parents of children who are living, studying or visiting abroad for extended periods of time must apply through the Mexican court of record if they wish to change their child's name as it appears on their official birth certificate. To grant the petition, both parents named on the child's birth certificate must consent to the name change or establish sufficient cause that one or both parents are no longer legally responsible for the child, such as through proof of death or adoption.
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