Can I take my husband’s last name as my middle name to keep my last name untouched despite the inverse order made on the marriage certificate?

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Can I take my husband’s last name as my middle name to keep my last name untouched despite the inverse order made on the marriage certificate?

I married last year and haven’t done anything to change my name on papers. On the marriage certificate, it was automatically written as my last name as a middle name. Can I choose to keep my last name but add my husband’s last name as my middle name?

Asked on August 7, 2018 under Family Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can do this: any adult can change his or her name to essentially anything he or she wants, with a few exceptions (not taking an unwilling person's name solely to harass; no names that are obscene; etc.). You may need to do this through the country Court at this time, but it's not a particularly difficult process and you can get forms and instructions from the Court whenever you decide what to do.


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