Divorce and Separation Name Changes
If you are recently divorced, you will be among a group of women of whom about 50% choose to change their name.
While most of these women choose to change back to their maiden name, you don't have to. There are a few different options for changing your name.
Changing Back to Your Maiden Name
If you are just wanting to go back to your maiden name after you have divorced a Marriage Certificate issued by your state or territory's Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages is usually sufficient evidence of a link between your married name and maiden name and you do not need to go through any application process to change your name. Some organisations will also require evidence of divorce, so it will be a good idea to have this handy as well. These two documents are all that you need to change your name on your identification documents and with government departments and other organisations.
Legally, you can start using your maiden name again whenever you like, even before you are divorced, this is called name by association.
Changing Your Name to Something Else
Keep in mind that you are not limited to just changing your name back to your maiden name. You can change your name to what ever you like! You can change your name to what ever you like! You could make up a new name, hyphenate or double barell your name with another name or use another family name (such as your mother's maiden name, a trend that is becoming increasingly popular). You can even choose to keep your married name for professional use but legally change your name for personal use, or vice versa. After divorce a lot of women do this as a way of keeping consistency in the workplace and amongst colleagues and clients.
If you are wanting to change your name in any other way apart from back to your maiden name, you will need to go through the standard name change process.
A name change kit could save you a lot of time if you are
going to change your name. We sell a name change kit that includes instructions
for legally changing your name, how to notify different
organisations about your name change, frequently asked questions about name change after
divorce or separation and the checklist included is very handy (4 pages
long!). Click here for more information about our name change kit.