How to file change of name for adult or minor, or change of gender
The California Courts Self-Help Center has instructions and forms to start the process to change your name or obtain a court order recognizing change of gender to update a gender marker or sex identifier.
Filing fees are listed on the Court’s fee schedule.
Publishing the Petition for Name Change
NOTE: Publication is NOT required when a Petitioner seeks to change his or her name to conform to a change in gender identity.
When your hearing is set, a copy of the Order to Show Cause for Change of Name (NC-120) must be published once a week for four consecutive weeks prior to the date of the hearing. Please refer to the List of Approved Newspapers.
What if only one parent is petitioning to change the name of a child?
If service is required on the non-petitioning parent and his or her address is unknown, the petitioning parent must complete and file an Application and Declaration In Support of Request to Dispense with Notice to Minor's Parent – Name Change with the court before the hearing.
Bring the following to the court:
- Copy of newspaper publications
- Completed Decree of Name Change Form # NC-130 for minors and adults, or NC-230 for gender change.
- For name change of a minor, Proof of Service to the non-filing parent, if petition is filed by one parent. The minor does not have to be present at the hearing.
What to do after the hearing?
Once your petition is granted, you may obtain a certified copy of Decree of Name Change (NC-130) or Decree of Gender Change (NC-230) from the Civil Business Office for a fee. You will need this to change all your legal documents, including your birth certificate, social security card, driver's license, and other identification such as your passport.