Some parties to a divorce will revert back to the name they used prior to the marriage (maiden name) making it part of the divorce decree. Those who decide to revert back to a maiden name months or years after they divorce – perhaps wanting to keep the same name as their kids – are often surprised by the legal rigmarole involved in getting their name switched back.
In Illinois steps include filing a petition and a Notice of Filing for a Change of Name with the court to set a hearing date; publishing the intent to change a name in the newspaper; filing the Certification of Publication with the court; attending the hearing to grant the request; changing names on all pertinent documents such as drivers licenses and bank accounts; and, finally, notifying the Secretary of State of the name change so your records can be updated. Whew!
The step involving publication of the intent to change a name in the newspaper is perhaps the most galling to women wishing to revert back to a maiden name, with one recently commenting in the Chicago Tribune that “it’s completely intrusive and ridiculous…to have to announce this in the newspaper”. Fortunately, there is a new law in the works awaiting signature by the governor eliminating the legal requirement of publishing a notice in the newspaper after complaints made their way to a state legislator who would like to see the process be “more in line with changing a name with a marriage certificate in hand”.
When You Have Questions About Reverting to Your Maiden Name After Divorce
Contact Our Lake County (IL) Divorce Decree Attorney for Help
As it stands, however those divorcing who want to revert back to their maiden name should work with your Illinois family law attorney to have it included in your divorce decree to simplify the process, avoiding additional legal steps in the future. For those who did not request a name change within their divorce decree and now wish to revert back to their maiden name, as of June the newspaper publication requirement lives on. Contact the Libertyville family law offices of Ronald L. Bell & Associates PC for more information today at 847-495-6000.