Mississippi Legal Name Change

Below are the relevant state statutes, as well as links to the form petitions and instructions for obtaining a legal name change for yourself or a minor.

If, after reviewing the information below, you find the need for further legal assistance, you should visit this online legal service.

If you are seeking a marriage name change or a divorce name change, your marriage license or divorce decree can serve as your legal name change document. Thus you can proceed to Name Change Notification, the final step of the name change process. Otherwise, read the information below and follow the links to learn about obtaining a legal name change.

Mississippi State Code:

Sec. 41-57-23. Proceedings to correct birth certificate containing major deficiencies.
(1) Any petition bill of complaint or other proceeding filed in the chancery court to:

(a) change the date of birth by two (2) or more days

(b) change the surname of a child

(c) change the surname of either or both parents

(d) change the birthplace of the child because of an error or omission of such information as originally recorded or

(e) make any changes or additions to a birth certificate resulting from a legitimation filiation or any changes not specifically authorized elsewhere by statute shall be filed in the county of residence of the petitioner or filed in any chancery court district of the state if the petitioner be a nonresident petitioner. In all such proceedings the State Board of Health shall be made a respondent therein and a certified copy of the petition bill of complaint or other proceeding shall be forwarded to the State Board of Health.

(3) Process may be served upon the State Registrar of Vital Records. The State Board of Health shall file an answer to all such proceedings within the time as provided by general law. The provisions of this section shall not apply to adoption proceedings. Upon receipt of a certified copy of a decree which authorizes and directs the State Board of Health to alter the certificate it shall comply with all of the provisions of such decree.

(3) If a child is born to a mother who was not married at the time of conception or birth or at any time between conception and birth and the natural father acknowledges paternity the name of the father shall be added to the birth certificate if a notarized affidavit by both parents acknowledging paternity is received on the form prescribed or as provided in Section 93-9-9. The surname of the child shall be that of the father except that an affidavit filed at birth by both listed mother and father may alter this rule. In the event the mother was married at the time of conception or birth or at any time between conception and birth or if a father is already listed on the birth certificate action must be taken under Section 41-57-23(1) to add or change the name of the father.

SOURCES: Codes Hemingway’s 1917 § 4868; 1930 § 4904; 1942 § 7060; Laws 1912 ch. 149; 1938 ch. 269; 1942 ch. 307; 1944 ch. 309 § 1; 1962 ch. 400; 1968 ch. 372 § 1; 1971 ch. 406 § 1; 1978 ch.375 § 2; 1983 ch. 522 § 34; 1989 ch. 511 § 3 from and after July 1 1989.

Sec. 93-17-1. Jurisdiction to alter names and legitimate offspring; legitimation by subsequent marriage.
(1)  The chancery court or the chancellor in vacation, of the county of the residence of the petitioners shall have jurisdiction upon the petition of any person to alter the names of such person, to make legitimate any living offspring of the petitioner not born in wedlock, and to decree said offspring to be an heir of the petitioner. 

(2) An illegitimate child shall become a legitimate child of the natural father if the natural father marries the natural mother and acknowledges the child.

SOURCES: Codes 1942 § 1269-01; Laws 1955 Ex. ch. 34 § 1; 1981 ch. 529 § 5 from and after July 1 1981.

State Name Change Petition and Instructions
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