Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Can I change her last name without his permission?

My daughter has her father's last name.

She hasn't seen him in over 9 months and he moved out of the country 6 months ago. I have full custody and he is listed on the birth certificate.

He has no intention of returning, ever. And well he has some immigration issues so he probably couldn't even come over legally in a long long time.

I want her to have my name. His family here wants nothing to do with her and she will probably never see her father again and I just don't want her having his last name if they aren't going to be helping me out at all and they are never going to be involved with her life.

Can I change it without his signature? I mean, it's impossible to get his signature anyway.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 11:56 PM on Jun. 17, 2011 in Relationships

Answers (10)
  • No you can't. I have the same damn problem.

    Answer by emmyandlisa at 11:58 PM on Jun. 17, 2011


    I'm not sure what you have to do though because you have to wat to get the father to sign off. There's a start for you at least.


    Answer by Rosehawk at 12:07 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • You can try without the father's consent in the case of abandonment. It is up to the judge.

    Answer by treynlisa at 12:21 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • I changed my daughter's last name to my boyfriends last name. She had her bio dad's last name but he was not on the birth certificate and had never supported her so I didnt even have to notify him.

    But, they said if he was on the certificate I would have to serve him and he could either waive his rights to further notices or fight it. Did he sign anything saying that he would never have contact with you and your child again? If you attempt to serve him but can't, then the courts will go forward without him.

    Answer by huntin_mama at 12:24 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • The only address I can try to serve him at is his parent's house. He lives in Guatemala now so there's no chance he can show up...however I do get the feeling that his nosy/rude cousin will show up in his behalf. That won't have any bearing, correct?

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 12:39 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • In my experience with family court they will not let anyone in the court not directly related to the case. So I don't think that will be a problem.

    Answer by treynlisa at 12:45 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • iv heard in some cases where they will let you and some are sticklers about it!! in your case you shouldnt havea problem though but i know it costs a pretty penny

    Answer by Alyson_Torres09 at 1:29 AM on Jun. 18, 2011


    Answer by smiley745 at 4:55 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • When I divorced my ex, I changed my sons last name back to my maiden name when I changed mine back. I had to get their father's permission in order to do it. If I hadn't been able to serve him, they would have gone forward without him. If he'd refused, I could have explained it all to a judge and the judge *might* have changed it if they felt that my reasons were valid and strong enough to warrant the change.

    My best advice would be to talk to a lawyer, or to just go forward with it, make sure you serve him (even though he's out of country, follow the entire legal process properly that way you stand a chance even if he doesn't respond or refuses) and see what happens.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 7:39 AM on Jun. 18, 2011

  • Depends on the State/County you are in. I know in my County I looked online and if the child is 13yrs old or younger you have to bring in 2 witnesses on behalf of the child and also serve the Father with papers, so that he knows that the court date it set up. Over 14yrs old, the child can go in and talk to the Judge directly and you also need to still serve the father with papers.

    Even if you have Full Physical and Legal Custody you must still notify the other parents of the change.

    Answer by OctMommyof3 at 1:07 PM on Jun. 18, 2011

Join CafeMom now to contribute your answer and become part of our community. It's free and takes just a minute.