My daughter was born before her father and I got married. I wanted to know how much it cost to change her last name and how to go about doing so?
Real Estate Attorney
Here's a good quick resource regarding name change. It is geared toward adult name changes, but it will give you some background:
A little on the more technical side, this is the Clerk of Court's guide to Name Changes for South Carolina. It lists the laws and some general information regarding the procedure required for a name change:
Changing a name can be a somewhat formal process requiring both a petition of the Family Court and hearing before a Family Court judge. Even though it requires the involvement of the Family Court, it can also be a very standard process depending on the circumstances of the name change. If the person's name to be changed is a minor, there would have to be a guardian ad litem (GAL) appointed to represent the child. It may sound like a lot for a name change, but you want both the Court and GAL involved, even in uncontested circumstances to ensure that binding nature of the change. In addition, there are security concerns and child welfare issues to consider when contemplating a name change.
Cost can be affected by whether an attorney is hired, the circumstances of the name change (whether it would be contested or not), the fact that there needs to be a hearing, and if a GAL would need to be appointed. Georgetown County provides great services and has a great bar of general practice attorneys or family attorneys that could handle the matter for you. The advantage of having an attorney is that they can do the paperwork (petition, notice if required, filing, etc...) and attend the hearing to avoid the process of drafting a petition or speaking at the hearing. I believe the filing fee est. by the court is $150.
I hope this provides some guidance to find more information or help find the right attorney.
Ian A. Taylor
The Taylor Law Office L.L.C.
Pawleys Island, SC
The information provided is not intended to create an attorney/client relationship and shall not be construed as legal advice. The resources or information given is provided as general information only.