Is There An Age Requirement To Change Your Legal Name?

Is There An Age Requirement To Change Your Legal Name?

by Dec 18, 2019Family Law

Changing your legal name is a big decision. Regardless of the reason you’ve decided to change your name, only adults are allowed to legally change their names at will. Minors cannot change their legal name without parental consent.

In California, the age of adulthood is eighteen. This means anyone (there are a few exceptions) eighteen years old or older can apply for a name change whenever they want.

Name Change Legal Requirements

Generally speaking, there are very few legal requirements for those who want to change their name. The only reasons a legal name change will be denied are if:

  • You are changing your name in order to commit fraud
  • Your name change is an attempt to avoid creditors or prosecution
  • The name you choose is trademarked (i.e. you can’t change your name to McDonald’s, Nike, or Coca-Cola).
  • You are a convicted criminal
  • You are a registered sex offender

Assuming none of those conditions are true, whatever name you want to give yourself is perfectly legal.

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Minors And Young Children

While the issue of a legal name change is not a common issue for minors and young children in most of the country, it is slightly more common here in California. This is because of the entertainment industry.

Using a legal stage name is a common occurrence for young actors. By law, any child or minor that wants or needs to legally change their name must have parental consent.

Working With An Attorney

The easiest way to get your name legally changed is to work with an experienced family law attorney. While using an attorney is optional, the legal process of changing your name is complex and sometimes confusing.

Many people who apply for a legal name change without consulting an attorney have their applications rejected because they made a mistake with their paperwork or in the process itself.

At Vonder Haar Law, we’ve helped many clients quickly and easily change their legal names. If you are considering changing your name, contact us today to learn how we can help.


At Vonder Haar Law Offices, we offer every client a free phone consultation to discuss their unique situation and determine how we can help. To arrange a consultation, please fill out the adjacent form or call us at: (707) 529-3200.

We provide representation in California State and Federal Courts. We accept most major credit cards for your convenience.

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