Apply for a Name Change

Legally change your name by submitting a petition to a Superior Court.

To change your name if you are a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident, you must submit a petition to your local Superior Court.  When you request to change your name, you are required to publicize your petition and wait at least 30 days before a hearing. After the court approves your name change request, you should update your name on government identification and other documents.

If you filed for a name change when you applied for your marriage license in order to take the name of your spouse, your marriage certificate from your county’s probate court is your legal name change document. You do not need to apply again for a name change through the county’s Superior Court. If you are applying to become a U.S. citizen, you may request a name change during the naturalization process.

How Do I … Petition to Change My Name?

  • Get Prepared

    • You’ll need to decide on a new name. In your paperwork, you also may be asked for the reason why you want to change your name, such as for marriage, divorce, or gender identity. Please print this name clearly in all your petition documents.
    • You may wish to consult a lawyer before submitting a petition. You can find a lawyer through the State Bar of Georgia.
  • Gather What You’ll Need

    • Proof of identity and current name, such as a valid Georgia driver’s license
    • Required forms for your petition, such as a Petition to Change Name, a Verification form, and a Notice of Petition. There are multiple documents required for a name change. These forms may vary by county and can be provided by the Clerk’s Office of the Superior Court.
    • Method of payment for fees associated with filing a petition and publishing a notice.
  • Submit a Petition

    • File a petition to the Clerk’s Office of the Superior Court of the county where you reside. Contact the Clerk’s Office of the Superior Court for information about how to submit a petition and pay fees.
    • You must complete and sign all required paperwork for your petition. Some forms may also need to be notarized by a Notary Public. Keep a copy of these forms for your record.
    • When you file your petition, you will receive a court case number. Keep a copy of this number for your record.
  • Place a Public Notice

    When you submit a name change petition, you are required to publish a notice of your request. A notice must appear in a newspaper specified by the court at least once a week for 4 weeks. You must file a notice form and submit payment to the Superior Court for this notice to appear in publication. Keep a copy of the Publisher’s Affidavit as proof your notice was published.

  • Attend a Hearing

    • The required waiting period for an adult name change in Georgia is 30 days from the date of filing in court. When the waiting period and publication period are over, you will have a final hearing with the Superior Court.
    • You must complete and sign all required paperwork for your full hearing. Some forms may also need to be notarized by a Notary Public. Keep a copy of these forms for your record.
    • On the day of your court appearance, arrive early and go to your assigned courtroom. Bring all your required forms and documents with you. If you fail to attend your hearing, the court may dismiss your case.
    • During the full hearing, the judge will review your case and make a decision. If the judge approves your request, you will receive a certified copy of the final order.
  • Next Steps

    • Keep a copy of the certified final order, or decree, for your records.
    • Update your name on government identification (such as your Georgia driver’s license, Social Security card, and U.S. passport) and other important records.

Disclaimer: General This information was prepared as a public service of the State of Georgia to provide general information, not to advise on any specific legal problem. It is not, and cannot be construed to be, legal advice. If you have questions regarding any matter contained on this page, please contact the related agency.

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