Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Sep 24, 2010

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The requirements for changing your name in South Dakota mostly consist of a petition or form filed with the court, payment of a fee, and attending a hearing. It isn’t as difficult as you might expect, and with a little information to guide you a name change is a manageable task. Information to help is included below, with answers to the questions commonly asked about the South Dakota name change process.

What forms are required for a South Dakota name change?

The State of South Dakota does not have a specific name change form. You must write your own petition to change the name, use a form prepared by a commercial service, or have an attorney write one for you. Click on the following link and search the South Dakota Code for more details: South Dakota Code Title 21, Chapter 37- Change of Namet

Where do I file the forms for a name change in South Dakota?

The completed forms must be filed with the circuit court clerk of the county where you currently live.

Do I need to notarize the forms?

Check with your local courthouse.

Is there a filing fee for a South Dakota name change?

Yes. Check with the clerk of the court to determine the cost. A fee waiver may generally be obtained with a showing of sufficient hardship.

Do I need to schedule a court hearing?

Yes. The clerk will give you a date for your hearing when you file your petition. The hearing will be at least four weeks from the time you file your petition.

Do I need to publish something in a local newspaper?

Yes. Notice must be published at least once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the hearing.