North Dakota 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.
North Dakota State Code:
Court authorized to change name of persons and cities: The district court shall have the authority to change the names of persons and cities within this state. [N.D. Code, Title 32 Judicial Remedies, Chapter 32-28 Change of Names of Persons and Places, Sec. 32-28-01.]
Change of name of person – Petition:
1. Any person desiring to change that person’s name may file a petition in the district court of the county in which the person is a resident, setting forth:
a. That the petitioner has been a bona fide resident of the county for at least six months before the filing of the petition.
b. The reason for which the change of the petitioner’s name is sought.
c. The name requested.
2. The judge of the district court, upon being duly satisfied by affidavit or proof in open court of the truth of the allegations set forth in the petition, that there exists proper and reasonable cause for changing the name of the petitioner, and that thirty days’ previous notice of the intended application has been given in the official newspaper of the county in which the petitioner resides, shall order a change of the name of the petitioner. The court may waive publication of the notice when the proposed change relates only to a first or given name as distinguished from a surname or upon evidence satisfactory to the court that the petitioner has been the victim of domestic violence as defined in section 14-07.1-01.
3. If the person whose name is to be changed is a minor, the court shall consider the appointment of a guardian ad litem, and notice of the intended application must be published in the official newspaper of the county in which the minor resides and, if different, the official newspaper of the county in which each of the minor’s parents reside. If the minor has a noncustodial parent, a copy of the notice must be deposited in a post office in this state, postage prepaid, not later than ten days after the publication of the notice, and directed to the noncustodial parent’s last reasonably ascertained post-office address. An affidavit of mailing of the notice prepared in accordance with the North Dakota Rules of Civil Procedure must be filed with the court. [N.D. Code, Title 32 Judicial Remedies, Chapter 32-28 Change of Names of Persons and Places, Sec. 32-28-02.]
Costs-Change not to affect rights or pending actions. All proceedings under this chapter shall be at cost of the petitioner or petitioners for costs as in other civil actions. Any change of name under the provisions of this chapter in no manner shall affect or alter any action or legal proceedings then pending, or any right, title, or interest whatsoever.
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