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LegalGems, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 10316
Experience:  Experienced Family Law Attorney
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I had a question in regards to having my children's last

Customer Question

I had a question in regards ***** ***** my children's last names changed. we are currently in NC
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: not yet.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: yes.My children want to change their names to that of my husbands and I last name. They are 15,10,12. My ex husband lives in another state, they do not have a relationship with him, owes several thousand dollars of child support and he will not respond to me in regards ***** ***** the name change.
JA: Because family law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: I am in North Carolina
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LegalGems replied 10 months ago.

Hello! I will be reviewing your question and posting a response momentarily; if you have any follow up questions please respond here. Thanks!

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Wonderful. Thank you!
Expert:  LegalGems replied 10 months ago.

Thank you for your patience;

NC is very strict in this regards; basically they will require a parent to prove abandonment of the children- that statute is NC 1111 located:

Abandonment can be found if the parent failed to provide support for the children for a period of a year.

Here is the portion of the statute that authorizes a parent to petition the court for a name change based on abandonment:

(d) An application to change the name of a minor child may be filed by the child's parent or parents, guardian appointed under Article 6 of Chapter 35A of the General Statutes, or guardian ad litem appointed under Rule 17 of the Rules of Civil Procedure, and this application may be joined in the application for a change of name filed by the parent or parents. A change of parentage or the addition of information relating to parentage on the birth certificate of any person is governed by G.S. 130A-118. An application to change the name of a minor child may not be filed without the consent of both parents if both parents are living, unless one of the following applies: (1) A minor who has reached the age of 16 may file an application to change his or her name with the consent of the parent who has custody of the minor and has supported the minor, without the necessity of obtaining the consent of the other parent, when the clerk of court is satisfied that the other parent has abandoned the minor. (2) A parent may file an application on behalf of the minor without t

That is located here:

When abandonment is involved one must hire an attorney to initiate the process because it is necessary to prove to the court the abandonment issue before the name change petition will be accepted by the court. Then if abandonment is determined, the case will be referred to the dockete for a hearing on the name change-to determine if it is in the children's best interest.

Once that abandonment issue is determined, here is the form packet:

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Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.

Expert:  LegalGems replied 10 months ago.

Information on parental rights termination here: