I just want my name back, particularly since I never changed it in the first place.
February 3, 2011 3:07 PM Subscribe
I never changed my name after I got married, but I signed my name with my husband's last name on several legal documents. Now we're getting divorced, and my lawyer tells me that I have to request in my MDA that my name be restored to my maiden name. I live in Tennessee. Help me understand this please!
posted by mudlark to Law & Government (19 answers total)
I signed my name with my husband's last name on the deed to our home, for example. And all of my divorce paperwork (parenting plan and dissolution agreement) has used my husband's last name with my first name as well. I have mentioned this to my attorney several times and told her that I was concerned because that is not my legal name, but she assures me that it's fine and keeps using it.
This week, I got an email from her telling me that we need to request in my MDA that my name be restored to my maiden name, and she added that we have a very conservative judge who may not allow me to return to my maiden name because my husband and I have a minor child together and she believes that we should all have the same last name (I mean, really??? This sounds crazy to me, but this IS the south...) I reminded her again that this is not my legal name, but she tells me I have to do it because my name is this way on legal documents.
Can anyone tell me if this is typical? How can a judge tell me that I can't use my legal name and that I have to use my ex husband's name? And if a judge wouldn't do that, then why is my lawyer so insistent on including it in the dissolution agreement? And this might be silly, but does the fact that all of my divorce paperwork is in a name that is not my legal name make it somehow null and void?
Thanks for any help!