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Divorce and Name Changes

Divorce and Name Changes

Whether you are preparing for a marriage or going through a divorce, you may have questions about the process for changing your name. The following are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions we receive from our clients:

Do I need to go to court to get a name change?

Yes. Your name changes needs to be in your divorce decree. If it is not, you’re going to have trouble changing your name. A lawyer can help you with this. If you are changing your name to that of your new spouse or returning to your maiden name after a divorce, you can’t just begin using your new (or old) name unless it’s in the court order. Using a marriage certificate or divorce decree serves as enough proof of your name change. Only in the event of a change to an entirely new name will you need to get a court order.

What happens if I have trouble with my new name?

Call a lawyer for starters, but one helpful strategy is to carry documentation that shows both your old and new names. A passport can show your old name, as well as listing the new name as an “AKA.” For the most part, you can work around difficulties by speaking with supervisors or contacting the main offices of government agencies. If institutions continue to give you a hard time, you may obtain a judge’s order legally establishing your new name.

Who do I need to contact about my name change?

You may need to contact various government and business agencies that you regularly deal with and get your name changed on their records. This includes banks, insurance providers and the Utah Department of Motor Vehicles. If you have any professional licenses, you should also have your name updated in those records.

Can I Get Alimony?

In Utah, spouses can receive either temporary or permanent alimony during and after a divorce, depending on the circumstances of the marriage. To determine if alimony is appropriate in a case, the judge carefully analyzes the needs of the spouse seeking the support and whether the potential payer is financially capable of providing that assistance.

Other factors that go into determining alimony arrangements include (1) The length of the marriage; (2)The health and age of each spouse; (3) One spouse’s need to seek education or training to support him/herself; (4) If the spouse seeking alimony is capable of becoming self-supporting; (5) If one spouse has a limited earning capacity because of caring for the children; (6) How marital property will be distributed between the spouses; (7) The contributions of one spouse as a homemaker that enhanced the other spouse’s ability to be the family’s major breadwinner; and (8) Whether acts of one spouse inhibited the other’s ability to obtain employment or the increase his/her earning capacity.

If the judge decides he or she will award alimony to one of the spouses, that arrangement could be temporary or permanent. Temporary alimony orders end as soon as the final judgment for divorce is entered. The recipient will only continue to receive payments after the divorce if the judge issues a permanent order.

A permanent order can end, as well, if certain circumstances arise. This may include either party’s death, a substantial decrease in the financial capability of the payer or the remarriage of the recipient.

Name Change Lawyer Free Consultation

If you have a question about divorce law or if you need help with a name change, please call Ascent Law at (801) 676-5506. We will help you.

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506