Name Change for an Adult

RC 2717.03 states that a person desiring a name change may file an application in the county in which they have been a bona fide resident for sixty (60) days prior to filing.

Once all the necessary documents are filed with the Court, a hearing date may be scheduled.  The Applicant may be required to publish a legal notice of the application in a newspaper of general circulation in this county, one time at least thirty (30) days prior to the hearing date.  Publication will not be required if the Applicant satisfactorily proves that publication would jeopardize the Applicant’s personal safety.

The Court does not provide new birth certificates.  The Court will forward to the Bureau of Vital Statistics a copy of the Judgment Entry approving the name change, unless the name change is simply restoring the Applicant’s birth name (i.e. following a divorce, dissolution or a spouse’s death) or the Applicant does not want a change to the birth certificate.  The Bureau does not issue a new Certificate of Live Birth (commonly referred to as a birth certificate); upon request within approximately 90 days following receipt of Judgment Entry, the Bureau can then issue a “Certificate of Birth” in the new name and with a footnote referencing that the legal name change is on file.

If there are questions about the new Certificate of Birth contact may be made with the following office:

Ohio Department of Health
Bureau of Vital Statistics
P.O. Box 15098
Columbus, OH  43215
614-466-2531(Monday – Friday)

Items necessary to file a Name Change for an Adult:

  • Applicant must be a Shelby County resident for at least sixty (60) days prior to filing;
  • A copy of the Applicant’s birth certificate;
  • The base court cost deposit paid to the Court can be found in Appendix A of the Local Rules of Court;
  • Review the complete list of requirements outlined on the Court’s Checklist found below.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

An adult resident, who has lived in Shelby County, Ohio for at least sixty (60) days, may apply to the Probate Court for a change of name.

What is the procedure?

Ohio law permits an adult to apply to the Probate Court for a name change.  After the filing of the paperwork the Court may set a hearing date, generally 60 days after the filing.  If the Court determines publication is required, notice of the application and hearing date will be published at least thirty (30) days prior to the date of hearing, one time in a paper of general circulation in Shelby County, Ohio (unless it is proven to the Court that publication would jeopardize the Applicant’s personal safety).  The Applicant must establish a reasonable and proper reason for seeking the name change.

A newspaper with a general circulation within Shelby County may be used for the publication of the notice.

The Court does not establish the rates charged by a selected newspaper for publishing the required notice.

The names of an adult may not be changed for an individual who has been plead guilty to, convicted of, or been adjudicated delinquent because of, an identity fraud offense, or a sexual offense that resulted in the individual being required to register as a sexual offender.

The Court will consider evidence from the Applicant, and any credible witnesses at a hearing if needed, to establish that reasonable and proper cause exists to change the name.

What Documentation is Required?

With the filing of the initial application, the Court requires a copy of the Applicant’s birth certificate. If the name has been previously changed, then a certified copy of that supporting documentation will also be required.  The Deputy Clerk will photocopy the original documents, and return the originals to the Applicant.

If there is a variation between the name on the birth certificate and the name being changed, the Court requires that satisfactory documentary evidence be provided to explain the difference.

What is the Cost?

The Applicant will be required to pay the deposit upon filing of their Application; see Local Rules of Court, Appendix A, for the current deposit amount.

Is a New Birth Certificate Issued?

The Court does not provide new birth certificates.  The Court will forward to the Bureau of Vital Statistics a copy of the Judgment Entry approving the name change, unless the Applicant is not seeking a change in the birth name.  The Bureau does not issue a new Certificate of Live Birth (commonly referred to as a birth certificate); but, upon request the Bureau will issue a “Certificate of Birth” in the new name with a footnote that recites individual’s name results from a legal name change proceeding.  It generally takes the Bureau 90 days to process the name change documentation.  If there are questions about the new Certificate of Birth contact may be made with the following office:

Ohio Department of Health

Bureau of Vital Statistics

P.O. Box 15098

Columbus, OH  43215

614-466-2531(Monday – Friday)

 

Who Should be Notified of the Changed Name?

After the name change is approved, the Applicant should promptly give notice that the name has been changed to financial institutions, motor vehicle bureaus, licensing agencies, employer human resources departments, educational institutions, the social security administration, and creditors. Doing so will prevent delay when the entity is later requested to pay a benefit, release a deposit, reissue a license, confirm a degree, or extend credit. Doing so while living in the vicinity of the Court facilitates obtaining additional copies of the Judgment Entry, if that is required as part of the notification process.

Must the Court Approve the Change of Name to be Requested?

The Court has the discretion to disapprove the change of name when it determines the change is being sought for purposes of fraud or deception, and when it is determined that the change is against public policy.

Is an Attorney required?

Many persons can complete the name change process without an attorney.  An attorney may be helpful in assembling the legal documents necessary to establish the identity of the Applicant who may be involved with a foreign birth and/or adoption.

Deputy Clerks of the Probate Court are prohibited by Ohio law from assisting in the preparation of the required forms.

Standard Probate Forms 

For all Standard Probate Forms click  here.

For Checklists and Forms exclusive to Shelby County Probate Court, see the forms section below.

COURT CHECKLIST AND FORMS

Adult Name Change Checklist

Civil Fee Waiver Affidavit and Order

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