Can I revert to my maiden name when I divorce, like Fergie?

It has been reported that singer and actress Fergie Duhamel wants to revert to her birth name of Stacy Ann Ferguson, when she divorces her husband Josh Duhamel. It is, of course, quite common for a wife to want to revert to her maiden name when she divorces, but just what is involved?

The reports state that Fergie has asked the judge dealing with her divorce to legally change her name. However, that is not how it works in this country – changing names is not a function of the divorce courts here.

In this country your name is quite simply what you want other people to call you. Accordingly, you can change your name at any time, and technically you don’t need to take any legal steps to effect the change. However, it may be necessary to have some documentary proof of the name change, as this will be required by certain organisations you may have to deal with. In that case, you can have a simple change of name deed drawn up. You can then send the signed deed, or a certified copy, to anyone who requires proof of your name change.

It should be noted, however, that you cannot change the name of your children when you divorce, without either the consent of the other parent (and anyone else with parental responsibility), or a court order. Courts are not usually prepared to agree to the change of a child’s name, unless there is a very good reason.

For further details regarding change of name on divorce, see this post. If you require more specific advice, then please contact us. To book a free initial consultation, click the green button at the top of this page and fill in the form, or call us on 020 3904 0506.

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Image of Fergie by Craig ONeal [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons.