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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 111469
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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I have guardianship over my step granddaughter who is 10 years

Customer Question

I have guardianship over my step granddaughter who is 10 years old. Her biological father died this past winter and her biological mother gave up her rights to my husband and myself. My granddaughter has recently found out she has siblings on her fathers side and an aunt and uncle who are very accepting of her into their family, they just never knew of her existence. My question is that my granddaughter wants to change her last name to her father's last name, can this be done without her mother's approval since she does not have guardianship and is living in another state?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
Yes, if the mother has given up parental rights and not just guardianship/custody to you, then you can engage an attorney to represent the child and file a name change petition in the court to change her last name and get an order to modify her birth certificate. If the mother only signed off giving you guardianship/custody, but still has parental rights then you need to serve the mother a copy of the name change petition and she has a chance to file an objection in the case if she wants to do so.