Very often, for various reasons, an adult will seek to have their name changed. Many times the name change is to change a last name, however it is also not uncommon to have an entire name changed. Most often name changes are as a result of a marriage or divorce, change of religion, or other legal reasons.
Name changes are freely granted, and typically the court does not have the ability to deny a name change unless it is apparent the name change is for fraudulent or criminal purposes.
During the process, a petition is filed with the court. Part of the petition includes an affidavit from the person requesting the name change setting forth that there is no intent to avoid criminal prosecution, creditors or commit fraud, And that there is no criminal history or pending criminal charges, and if there is, an explanation of the charge must be given.
After the petition is filled, notice is giving to the general public of the name change, usually through publication in the newspaper. So long as there is no legitimate opposition, a hearing is set in which the process before the court is held.
During the name change process the court will look at several factors and take testimony relating to