Name Change for Minors
How do I change my child's name?
A child cannot petition the court to have their name changed. Only a parent or guardian can do this. A name change petition can include both a parent and minor children. However, each parent will require a separate petition.
To change your child’s name, complete the following forms:
- Self-Help form packet SHC-NC-07
How do I change a child's name if I am the guardian?
You will need to complete the following forms:
Petition for Change of Name (Form NC-100) , Declaration of Guardian (Form NC-110G) , Order to Show Cause for Change of Name (Form NC-120) , Decree Changing Name of Minor by Guardian (Form NC-130G) , and Family Law Notice Re Related Case (Form L-1120)
How do I change my child's name and gender?
The forms needed have been assembled in Self-Help form packet SHC-NC-04.
How do I change my child's gender?
You will need to complete the following forms:
Family Law Notice Re: Related Case (L-1120), Petition for Recognition of Change of Gender and Issuance of New Birth Certificate (NC-300) , and Order for Change of Gender and Issuance of New Birth Certificate (NC-330) .
You can download the required forms by clicking on the form packet number or form number listed above. You can also locate the forms online from the Judicial Council website. The forms are also available at your nearest Self-Help Center.
If you want to speak with or hire an attorney, , you may refer to the Lawyer Referral Services found on the Self-Help Resources sheet .
At the time of filing you must pay the appropriate filing fee or request a Fee Waiver. You can check the local fee schedule for the current fee.
If you cannot afford to pay the court fees, you can apply for a Fee Waiver by completing the forms found in Self-Help form packet SHC-FW-01 .
What do I do with my completed forms?
Prior to filing you may visit one of the Self-Help Centers for a free pre-filing document review.
Appointments are offered on a first-come, first served basis.
You mail file your forms via mail or in person on the 7th floor, Room 706, at the Lamoreaux Justice Center in Orange.
If you file by mail, you should include a copy of all the forms you intend to file, a self-addressed stamped envelope, and the filing fee or fee waiver application and order.
If you file in person, you will be required to provide the Court clerk with the original and two (2) copies of all the documents you intend to file. The clerk will file your forms, assign a case number, set a hearing date, and return your copies with the "filed" endorsed stamp.
What do I do after I have filed my forms?
Serve the papers on absent parent
Unless both parents file the petition, the parent who files the petition must have the other parent served with a copy of the filed documents at least 30 days before the hearing. You do not need to serve a copy of your Fee Waiver.
If the other parent lives in California, the other parent should be served in person.
If the other parent lives outside of California, the other parent can be served by mail.
Your server will complete Proof of Service of Order to Show Cause: form NC-121 .
If you are unable to locate the other party, you can seek procedural assistance from the Self-Help Center, staff may be able to assist.
Who can serve the court papers?
Anyone 18 or over who is not listed as a party in the case can serve the other parent. You can ask someone you know, you can hire a process server, or hire the Sheriff’s office. Please note that a process server and Sheriff’s office do charge a fee.
Your server must fill out and sign the Proof of Service. Either you or your server must file the completed Proof of Service with the family law clerk located at the Lamoreaux Justice Center in Orange.
For most cases you must publish your filed form NC-120 (Order to Show Cause for Change of Name) in a newspaper of general circulation once a week for 4 weeks in a row. You can find the list of authorized newspapers here.
Please note there is a separate fee for publication that is not covered under a court ordered Fee Waiver. The fees also vary depending on the newspaper.
After you file your documents, you should not wait to arrange for the publication because this process must be completed before your hearing.
When the publication is completed, the newspaper will complete a proof of publication. That proof of publication must be filed with the Court prior to your hearing.
Day of the hearing
If both parents sign the petition, both must be present. If a parent objects to the request, they must also be present. Depending on the child’s age, the child should also be present. If there are no objections and the judge grant’s your request, you will be provided a copy of NC-130 (Decree of Name Change). You can also purchase certified copies of NC-130. You will likely need a certified copy to update a driver’s license, passport, or similar legal documents.
How do I let people know about my child's name?
Ask your child to use only their new name and tell people, schools and businesses, that you deal with that your child’s name has changed. If anyone requires proof, you can show them a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name).
How to change the name on your child’s driver's license or California ID?
Go to your local Department of Motor Vehicles. Inform them that your child has changed their name and would like a new ID card or driver’s license. You will have to present a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name). For additional information please visit www.dmv.ca.gov.
How to change the name on your child’s social security card?
You will have to contact the local Social Security Office. The Santa Ana office is located:
1851 EAST FIRST STREET
SANTA ANA, CA 92705
You will be required to complete form SS-5 (Application for a Social Security Card). Please note that the form can be used for both situations in where your child has never received a Social Security number and when the child has a Social Security number.
You will have to provide a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name) and one additional form of identification like a driver’s license, passport, school ID or report card, adoption record, health insurance card or medical card. For more information please visit www.ssa.gov.
How to change the name on your child’s birth certificate
If your child was born in California:
- You will have to complete form VS 23 . You can download the form by clicking on the form number. You can also obtain the form in person at the Orange County Recorder’s Office or your nearest Self-Help Center
- Your completed form, certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name), and the appropriate fee must be mailed to:
California Department of Public Health
Vital Records-Amendments-M.S. 5105
P.O. Box 997410
Sacramento, CA 95899
- For additional information please read "Amending a Birth Certificate After a Name Change" or visit www.cdph.ca.gov
If your child was born outside of California:
- You will have to contact the Office of Vital Records (or its equivalent) in the state or country where the child was born to obtain additional information on how to amend the birth certificate.
How to change the name on your child’s school records?
Go to the school’s main office and request to update your child’s name. You will have to present a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name) and complete any required paperwork. The court does charge a fee for certified copies.
How to change the name for insurance?
Let your health, car and life insurance companies know of your child’s name change. They might require a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name). They may re-issue policies to reflect the new name.
How to change the name on your child’s passport?
For information on how to update or apply for a passport visit U.S. Department of State at www.travel.state.gov.
How to change the name on your child’s bank accounts?
Your bank will require a certified copy of NC-310 (Decree Changing Name) and an additional form of identification like a driver’s license or school record. Please check with your bank to determine what forms of identification they accept and what forms you will have to complete.
How to change the name on your child’s public assistance?
Take a certified copy of NC-130 (Decree Changing Name) to your local public assistance office. They will assist you in updating their records. For your monthly reporting statement, you can note that your child’s name has been changed in the section that asks if there is anything else to report.
How to change the name on your child’s tax records?
Credit Cards, Legal and Other Important Documents
Notify credit card companies and change any important documents, like powers of attorney, living wills, trusts and contracts to the new name.