Name Change

questions & answers

Question: I have a felony conviction. Will this prevent me from changing my name?

Answer:

There is no law in Arizona prohibiting a felon from changing his or her name. However, it is in the judge’s discretion to approve a legal name change. The judge needs consider the following before approving a name change:

 “1. If The person has been convicted of a felony.

2. If felony charges are pending in any jurisdiction against the person for any offense under title 13, chapter 18, 20, 21, 22, 23 or 27 or any other offense involving false statements or misrepresentations about the person's identity.

3. If The person is knowingly changing the person's name to that of another individual for the purpose of committing or furthering the commission of any offense under title 13, chapter 18, 20, 21, 22, 23 or 27 or any other offense involving false statements.

4. The person is making the application solely for the best interest of the person.

5. The person acknowledges that the change of name will not release the person from any obligations incurred or harm any rights of property or actions in the original name.” A.R.S. 12-601.

 The motion to change a name requires an explanation for the name change. Because the judge will be weighing factors like public safety against your reasons for wanting to change your name, it is important that you clearly state your reasons for wanting to change your name in your motion.

Also note that, “a victim as defined in section 13-4401 or a prosecutor has standing to contest any legal name change at any time before the entry of judgment (the term “judgment” here refers to the judge’s approval of the name change) or up to one year after entry of judgment.” A.R.S. 12-601(D).

Before you proceed, you may want to review A.R.S. 12-601 and 12-602 (the laws concerning legal name changes), and the Name Change Article on this site.

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QUESTIONS

  • I have a felony conviction. Will this prevent me from changing my name?

STORIES

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  • State Bar of Arizona
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