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Name Change Against My Will

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Questions111

Junior Member
What is the name of your state? Texas

I spoke with an attorney yesterday who told me that there has been some recent case saying that a father has a constitutional right to the baby's name and that if he asks for the baby's last name to be changed to his in court, the judge will grant it. In fact, she basically said "It WILL happen". This seems contrary to most of what I have read and being an attorney in another field, this just seems counter-intuitive. She's the expert but I wanted to ask you guys if this is true, if you know about this, or what this is about?!

I realize it's just a name and in the grand scheme of things isn't worth knockdown dragout fights but I just want to know if this is true....

Thanks in advance.
 


djohnson

Senior Member
It's not as easy as she has made it sound. It could go either way depending on the age of child and the reasoning. I actually think in most cases the status quo has the higher authority.
 

casa

Senior Member
Questions111 said:
What is the name of your state? Texas

I spoke with an attorney yesterday who told me that there has been some recent case saying that a father has a constitutional right to the baby's name and that if he asks for the baby's last name to be changed to his in court, the judge will grant it. In fact, she basically said "It WILL happen". This seems contrary to most of what I have read and being an attorney in another field, this just seems counter-intuitive. She's the expert but I wanted to ask you guys if this is true, if you know about this, or what this is about?!

I realize it's just a name and in the grand scheme of things isn't worth knockdown dragout fights but I just want to know if this is true....

Thanks in advance.
It sounds as though the attorney you spoke with was referring to a specific case- and unless we know the specific situation, it's hard to say. ie; if the child is newborn and the father fights to have his name on the birth cert...then Yes, it's likely to happen. If the child is 7,8,9 years old and has never had the father's last name & the father fights to have the name changed...then it's less likely to happen. This topic is usually decided on a case-by-case basis.
 

casa

Senior Member
Questions111 said:
Sorry, I probably should've given a few more details. The child would be an infant and would be in my custody.
Then the attorney is most likely correct. :)
 

djohnson

Senior Member
Are you the mother or father?

If you are the father and are the legal father and getting custody, then it should be easy.

If you are the mother and the father is fighting for it, then he has a better chance because the child is an infant. You would have to show what was in the childs best interest. If father doesn't get involved or doesn't sign the BC or paternity paper, then you can do what you want.

It really depends on the circumstances and you still haven't given enough.
 

Questions111

Junior Member
djohnson said:
Are you the mother or father?

If you are the father and are the legal father and getting custody, then it should be easy.

If you are the mother and the father is fighting for it, then he has a better chance because the child is an infant. You would have to show what was in the childs best interest. If father doesn't get involved or doesn't sign the BC or paternity paper, then you can do what you want.

It really depends on the circumstances and you still haven't given enough.
I'm the Mommy.
 

djohnson

Senior Member
Questions111 said:
I'm the Mommy.

and??????????

what are the circumstances? is there a legal father? are you married? What is childs name now?

you are the one wanting help, but honestly it's getting old trying to figure out how to help you.
 

Questions111

Junior Member
The child is not born yet - I'm asking in order to figure out whether I can expect the name I give the child (my name) to remain its name. We will be living in different cities. We were never married - in fact the relationship only lasted a few weeks. I fully expect that once it's all said and done, he will be adjudicated the legal father as I have no intention of trying to hinder or prevent any relationship between the two of them. I realize you cannot give me a clear cut answer, this news just came as a surprise to me (especially in light of what I have read on this and other sites) and I was trying to find out if anyone knew about this and whether her response that "It WILL happen" is correct. I appreciate all of your help and it seems the answer is just "it depends." Thanks for your time.
 

casa

Senior Member
Questions111 said:
The child is not born yet - I'm asking in order to figure out whether I can expect the name I give the child (my name) to remain its name. We will be living in different cities. We were never married - in fact the relationship only lasted a few weeks. I fully expect that once it's all said and done, he will be adjudicated the legal father as I have no intention of trying to hinder or prevent any relationship between the two of them. I realize you cannot give me a clear cut answer, this news just came as a surprise to me (especially in light of what I have read on this and other sites) and I was trying to find out if anyone knew about this and whether her response that "It WILL happen" is correct. I appreciate all of your help and it seems the answer is just "it depends." Thanks for your time.
The attorney's response was correct in your situation. The answer of "it depends" was re; not knowing how old the child was. ie; if it was an older child- the answer could be different.
 

Questions111

Junior Member
casa said:
The attorney's response was correct in your situation. The answer of "it depends" was re; not knowing how old the child was. ie; if it was an older child- the answer could be different.

Is there still judicial discretion? Do I have any chance of getting a judge who thinks automatically giving a baby the father's name is a little antiquated?
 

stealth2

Under the Radar Member
It is entirely likely that the child will end up with Dad's name if he pushes for it, under the circumstances you describe.
 

casa

Senior Member
Questions111 said:
Is there still judicial discretion? Do I have any chance of getting a judge who thinks automatically giving a baby the father's name is a little antiquated?
Everything is open to judicial discretion. What any judge you will do is not something anyone can say for certain. However, the idea is less antiquated than it may appear for various reasons. The fact that a father would fight for this to happen while the child is so young shows willingness on the father's part to be a part of the child's life.

The baby isn't born yet, but you should know that if the father pursues all his legal rights, he is also almost assuredly going to get joint legal custody- and at least a percentage of physical custody. Remember this child is as much the father's as it is yours.
 

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