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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Washington, DC area
    Posts
    2

    Post Surname to Be Given to Child at Birth

    My question involves name change laws in the State of: Michigan

    I'm writing this for my own information and sort of on behalf of my aunt, whose 23-year-old granddaughter (my cousin) is expecting her first child out of wedlock. Her boyfriend is quite unsavory, to say the least...and I will divulge, if anyone is interested.

    Anyway, during a discussion between Aunt and Cousin, Cousin said that Boyfriend said there told her, "No way that baby is having your [Cousin's] last name." He insists that the baby have his surname.

    I'm guessing that Cousin and Boyfriend aren't going to last. My opinion is that if Baby and Cousin have the same surname, it will make life easier for Cousin. When Boyfriend leaves picture, I'm doubting child support, being carried on health insurance, and other paternal responsibilities aren't going to be carried out, due to his aforementioned unsavory nature. Therefore, Boyfriend will be completely irrelevant to their lives.

    Are there any laws in the State of Michigan that state the mother must give the child her surname if the child is illegitimate?

    I found the PUBLIC HEALTH CODE (EXCERPT)
    Act 368 of 1978 and the ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF PARENTAGE ACT
    Act 305 of 1996 on the MI State Legislature's website, and Act 368 only references that, "The surname of the child shall be registered as designated by the child's parents[,]" provided that they agree, I assume? What if the parent's don't agree on that surname? Who trumps whom? The mother? There is no question of paternity.

    If Cousin decides to change Baby's surname later, how much would something like that cost? Cousin is extremely immature, has minimal education, holds minimal job (I think she has a job?), is on WIC, has no money, is essentially homeless at the moment...Aunt will take Cousin in, but not Boyfriend, so Cousin won't go. Anyway, I know Aunt is going to ask ME what I think, and I'd like to be prepared when I tell her that Cousin needs to be responsible and choose a surname that will accurately reflect her and Baby's FUTURE, and not their present situation.

    Sorry if I sound judgmental or condescending - it's not intentional! I think of Cousin and her mom and Aunt, and the dramarama they've been through and look at my two little ones and think of the dramarama that Cousin's baby is probably going to go through, too. It breaks my heart.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Behind a Desk
    Posts
    98,846

    Default Re: Surname to Be Given to Child at Birth

    Unless the parents execute an acknowledgment of paternity, unless and until somebody files a paternity action and the putative father is declared the child's legal father he has no input in the child's name.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Washington, DC area
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Surname to Be Given to Child at Birth

    Ah, thank you so much, Mr. Knowitall! I skimmed the ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF PARENTAGE ACT Act 305 of 1996 a bit closer and I'll print and pass all of this on to my aunt. I'm very appreciative!

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