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Name Change Law and Procedures

Selected Provisions of the North Carolina General Statutes Relating to Name Change Laws and Procedures:

§ 101-2. Procedure for changing name; petition; notice.

A person who wishes, for good cause shown, to change his or her name must file an application before the clerk of the superior court of the county in which the person lives, after giving 10 days' notice of the application by publication at the courthouse door.

An application to change the name of a minor child may be filed by the child's parent or parents, guardian, or guardian ad litem, and this application may be joined in the application for a change of name filed by the parent or parents. Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit one parent to make an application on behalf of a minor child without the consent of the other parent if both parents are living; except that a minor who has reached the age of 16 years, upon proper application to the clerk, may change his or her name with the consent of the parent who has custody of the minor and has supported the minor, without the necessity of obtaining the consent of the other parent, when the clerk of court is satisfied that the other parent has abandoned the minor. A change of parentage or the addition of information relating to parentage on the birth certificate of any person is governed by G.S. 130A-118.

The consent of a parent who has abandoned a minor child is not required if a copy of an order of a court of competent jurisdiction adjudicating that parent's abandonment of the minor if filed with the clerk. If a court of competent jurisdiction has not declared the minor to be an abandoned child, the clerk, on 10 days' written notice by registered or certified mail, directed to the last known address of the parent alleged to have abandoned the child, may determine whether the parent has abandoned the child. If the parent denies that the parent abandoned the child, this issue of fact shall be transferred and determined as provided in G.S. 1-301.2. If abandonment is determined, the consent of the parent is not required. Upon final determination of this issue of fact the proceeding shall be transferred back to the special proceedings docket for further action by the clerk.

§ 101-7. Recording Name Change.

When the name of any individual, corporation, partnership, or association has been changed in a manner provided by law, any attorney licensed to practice law in this State may file an affidavit with the clerk of superior court stating facts concerning the change of name. The clerk shall cause the affidavit to be filed and indexed among the records of his office, pursuant to G.S. 7A-180(3) and G.S. 7A-343(3). The clerk shall also forward a copy of the affidavit under the seal of his office to the clerk of superior court of any other county named in the affidavit where it shall also be filed and indexed in accordance with this section. Affidavits filed and indexed under this section are for informational purposes only and neither the affidavit nor the manner of its filing and indexing shall in any manner affect the rights or liabilities of any person.

§ 101-3. Contents of petition.

The applicant shall state in the application his true name, county of birth, date of birth, the full name of parents as shown on birth certificate, the name he desires to adopt, his reasons for desiring such change, and whether his name has ever before been changed by law, and, if so, the facts with respect thereto.

§ 101-4. Proof of good character to accompany petition.

The applicant shall also file with said petition proof of his good character, which proof must be made by at least two citizens of the county who know his standing: Provided, however, proof of good character shall not be required when the application is for the change of name of a child under 16 years of age.


Changing The Name Of A Minor Child In North Carolina Without The Consent Of Both Parents