Can I continue using my married name after my divorce?

UPDATED: Jul 6, 2009

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Can I continue using my married name after my divorce?

Although my divorce papers say, “It is further ordered, adjudged and decreed by the Court that the Defendant is restored to her maiden name…” I chose to continue using my married name because my four children have my married name and it would have been a hassle to go back. Do I have the legal right to continue using my married last name?

Asked on July 6, 2009 under Family Law, Oklahoma


B. B., Member, New Jersey Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

I'm not an Oklahoma lawyer, and the law about this sort of thing can differ a bit from one state to another, so I'd check with a local attorney to be certain.

In most states, in most situations, you're free to use any name you want, for most purposes, as long as you don't use a name for the purpose of defrauding or misleading someone.  The fact that your divorce decree changes your name back (at your request, or his?) does leave you open to some question, if you go on using your former married name, although I understand your feelings about this.

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