You do not have to follow a legal process to start using a new name. But you might need a ‘deed poll’ to apply for or to change official documents like your passport or driving licence. There. Applying to change your name is a fairly straightforward process, with rules and procedures set down by state law and local courts. In all states, you will need to provide identification and establish that you are a legal resident; you may not change your name to carry out fraud or elude a criminal investigation. The court process of getting a court order after filing a Petition for Change of Name can take up to 3 months.First, you file your petition. Then, you will get a court date between 6 and 12 weeks away. How to Change Your Name. Whether you're getting married or you want a new identity, changing your name can seem like an overwhelming process. Luckily, all it takes is a little paperwork! List your new name on your marriage certificate. Talk to a Lawyer About How to Legally Change Your Name. Legally changing your name, whether for marriage, divorce, or another reason, can be a big life event. The laws in every state are different and you'll want to make sure you're doing it by the book, including filing your legal name change petition with the appropriate government entity. Changing your name from your married name back to your maiden name is a relatively simple process. However, different states have different requirements. Learn the basic steps to take to change your name back to your maiden name in your state. LegalZoom provides access to independent attorneys and self-help services at your specific direction. We are not a law firm or a substitute for an attorney or law firm. We cannot provide any kind of advice, explanation, opinion, or recommendation about possible legal rights, remedies, defenses, options, selection of forms or strategies. Name change generally refers to the legal act by a person of adopting a new name different from their name at birth, marriage or adoption. The procedures and ease of a name change vary between jurisdictions. In general, common law jurisdictions have loose procedures for a name change while civil law jurisdictions are more restrictive.