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We are planning on moving abroad. We are a couple and my…

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Hi, we are planning on...
Hi, we are planning on moving abroad. We are a couple and my wife has adopted my last name (this is the husband typing). Meaning, she dropped her maiden name and only uses her married last name. Her passport only reflects her married name. Because our wedding certificate (issued in CA) only carries her maiden name and her passport her married the international authorities require "paper trail" that documents the change. The marriage certificate is NOT enough for them as their laws dont allow a women to change her name - just to add the husbands last name. I am not sure what time of documentation I can request and to what entity that shows that she has legally changed her name?
Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Immigration Law
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3/27/2018
Immigration Lawyer: Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer replied 3 months ago
Judith Ludwic
Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 29,884
Experience: 34 years as practicing immigration attorney, with non-immigrant and immigrant visa experience.
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Hello my name is ***** ***** I am delighted to answer your questions. I am reviewing it and will post your answer momentarily.

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Immigration Lawyer: Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer replied 3 months ago

Welcome to JustAnswer! I have 34 years experience as an immigration attorney and I am here to help resolve your immigration issue. Tackling these issues can sometimes get confusing. Should you need to chat on the phone or document review, I am able to do that for an additional cost. Let me know at any time during our question and answer session if you are interested.

California has some very different laws. Unless you request a name change on your marriage license application the marriage certificate keeps your maiden name.

Your spouse will need to file a petition in the local court for a Change of Name to have her name officially changed to your last name.

The court clerks have forms they can give you with instructions on how to proceed to get the legal change of name. It is not a complicated process and one that she can do on her own following the instructions the court clerk gives you.

It may take a month or two so I would start this process immediately.

I hope that helps! Please let me know if you have any other questions. I appreciate this opportunity to help you. I do not receive a salary here at JustAnswer, and am only compensated for my time after receiving a rating. If you are very satisfied with my answer please take a moment to click on the 5 stars at the top of the page. The question thread remains open and you can ask follow-up questions.

Judith

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Thank you Judith.
Given that we did not go thru court for the change on name and that 2 month is a bit long. do you know if there is any goverment entity that can issue as report of her names - meaning saying she is known for both names? thank you
Immigration Lawyer: Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer replied 3 months ago

There is no authority other than a court to do a legal change of name. She cannot legally use your last name under the laws of CA where you were married unless she requested the court to change her name when she married.

You may be able to find a lawyer who know how to do the process for a name change and can do it more quickly.

Sorry, legally no authority exists to say she is AKA.

Judith

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Hi, she was able to change her drivers License and passport by simply submitting certificate of marriage. Does that mean it was court approved? How do we go about finding that court record?
Immigration Lawyer: Judith Ludwic, Immigration Lawyer replied 3 months ago

If the change of name was approved by the court it is on the marriage certificate that a name change was effectuated.

You should go down to the register of marriage licenses where you got married and have their clerk confirm that a name change was in fact effectuated at her request when you married.

Judith

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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