I want my ex-wife to take back her maiden name since we are not married any longer, can this be done?

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I want my ex-wife to take back her maiden name since we are not married any longer, can this be done?

I am now married again and want only my new wife to have my last name

Asked on October 7, 2011 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

S.J.H., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately for you, you cannot compel your former wife to remove your last name from her legal name and make her change her legal name back to her maiden name. She has an absolute right to keep that name but is given the right to legally change it back to her maiden name. She cannot use it for purposes of obtaining credit as your spouse or use it to gain some benefits under your name. However, other than that, your former spouse has the right to keep your last name and you cannot force her to return to her maiden name unless there was a bargained for agreement in your divorce decree that requires this which is extremely rare and some courts find that to be against public policy anyway.  


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