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  1. #1

    Default How to Prevent Future Name Changes

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

    I am not sure if this question goes in this forum, but it's the closest one I could find for it.

    For this, I will use made-up names as examples:

    My last name before I was married was Henderson.
    My husband's last name is George.
    When we married, I tacked his name onto mine, and made my *legal* last name Henderson George (with no hyphen).
    No, Henderson is not my middle name, but the first part of my last name. (This is the way I arranged it at the social security office when I married.)

    My husband and I are divorcing. He objects to having my name in the baby's name at all. But as the patient at the hospital, I will be the one given the birth certificate and my name (as is currently is) will be on all the baby's paperwork. What will happen if I put the baby's last name like mine is (Henderson George) on the birth certificate? Will he be able to get my name taken out of there later in court? Or can he refuse to sign the birth certificate if I put the baby's name like that?

    (I feel like we're equal parents so we should get equal naming rights. I'm not taking his name off, I just want mine in there too. He feels as though he can simply tell me I'm not allowed to do this, so that is why I'm asking.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    If you choose a name to which your husband objects, he is free to raise the issue in family court. You cannot stop him from doing so.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    What if I write it on the birth certificate and he refuses to sign the birth certificate?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Oklahoma
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    695

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    Your husband will have to file a motion in family court to have the name of the child reviewed. He cna petition to have his name or your name removed, but I don't see any avenue where your husband wins this one. Since the child was concieved during wedlock and your last name was known to him at that time, the child will carry the last name Henderson George as if you two were still married.

    The more common scenario is when two people are seperated and the woman is pregnant by another man. This orignial husband will often petition to have his name off the birth certificate since he had nothing to do with it. Given your situation it seems clear that the last name at the time of conception will carry over.

  5. #5

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    Since then, I have had another name problem.

    Husband and I agreed on a first and middle name for baby. The baby is seriously expected to come any day now. However, obviously, the agreed-upon name is not the child's legal name yet. Plenty of parents change their kids names several times before they are born.

    The agreed-upon middle name is not working out for me. We both agreed we'll call our child by the first name. However, he and his family are referring to the child by a nickname version of the middle name (which would make the name they are calling the child not any agreed-upon name). To avoid the child having an identity crisis, I feel like the best way to avoid trouble is to come up with a new middle name.

    I approached him with this issue to talk about a new middle name. He says I cannot change our agreed-upon name. I tried to say, "Yes, I can, it's not his legal name yet. I am the mother and I don't have to agree to call the child anything I don't want to." However, he just repeats the same thing over and over no matter what I say which is "You can't do that."

    I'm not even sure this is a legal question or not. I guess I just want confirmation that I am not obligated to name my child something I don't want to. And I want to know, once again, if I write down a new middle name on the birth certificate at birth, if he has a chance of changing the middle name based on me verbally agreeing to a different one that I no longer like 5 months ago.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    16,474

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    Quote Quoting burka
    View Post
    Since then, I have had another name problem.

    Husband and I agreed on a first and middle name for baby. The baby is seriously expected to come any day now. However, obviously, the agreed-upon name is not the child's legal name yet. Plenty of parents change their kids names several times before they are born.

    The agreed-upon middle name is not working out for me. We both agreed we'll call our child by the first name. However, he and his family are referring to the child by a nickname version of the middle name (which would make the name they are calling the child not any agreed-upon name). To avoid the child having an identity crisis, I feel like the best way to avoid trouble is to come up with a new middle name.

    I approached him with this issue to talk about a new middle name. He says I cannot change our agreed-upon name. I tried to say, "Yes, I can, it's not his legal name yet. I am the mother and I don't have to agree to call the child anything I don't want to." However, he just repeats the same thing over and over no matter what I say which is "You can't do that."

    I'm not even sure this is a legal question or not. I guess I just want confirmation that I am not obligated to name my child something I don't want to. And I want to know, once again, if I write down a new middle name on the birth certificate at birth, if he has a chance of changing the middle name based on me verbally agreeing to a different one that I no longer like 5 months ago.
    You are correct. He would have to take it to court to get anything changed to the way that he wanted it...and it would not be a guaranteed winner for him.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
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    Massachusetts
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    24,521

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    I would like to present a different point of view.

    Poster, please go to the dictionary and look up the word, compromise. Particularly since you did initally agree to the name, surely there's some way you and your stbx can reach an agreement you can both live with, so that each of you gets the name you want. It's his child too.

    Example: In my husband's family, there is a many-generation tradition that the first born son be named James. My late mother in law did not like the name James. My husband was given the first name of James but was called by his middle name. That's called compromise. Mature adults do it. Immature adults and children insist on having everything exactly their own way.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    OP, I really think that you're over-thinking this whole thing.

    While you do have SOME control over the child's actual name, you have NO control over what anyone CALLS the child. His family will refer to the child however they wish, regardless of what you - or anyone else - says. So you might as well wrap your head around that right now.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Toledo, OH
    Posts
    16,307

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    While you do have SOME control over the child's actual name, you have NO control over what anyone CALLS the child. His family will refer to the child however they wish, regardless of what you - or anyone else - says. So you might as well wrap your head around that right now.
    Concur. And then there will be what the child wishes to be called, regardless of what either parent wants.

    For example, my given name is Margaret Susanne. My family called me Peggy Sue. I didn't like it, and often went by Susanne, which annoyed my family, because my old man loved that damned Buddy Holly song. When I moved to Germany, my friends called me Gretchen. My husband calls me Maggie, which pissed my grandmother off. She had a screaming hissy about how that's not what my father wanted me to be called. My friends here in the US call me Missy, and that is also the name I work under. Birth certificate still reads Margaret Susanne, which I do not answer to, but the only people who really gave a damn about that are dead.

    As for my own kids, I don't remember when they were last called by their legal names. They've collected a pile of nicks from family and friends, and it bothers me not a whit.

    So, yeah, OP, you'd do well to nab yourself a teensy bit of perspective here. Your kid is going to have a couple dozen nicknames in short order, and you won't be able to do diddly boo about it. You'll have more important things to worry about than a middle name (for the love of dog!) Real Soon Now.

  10. #10

    Default Re: How to Prevent Future Name Changes

    To be honest, I 100% agree with you guys.

    I am not the one with control issues.

    I have asked him on three separate occassions to rethink names with me.

    He refuses, citing his go to phrase, "You can't change it."

    He refuses to re-brainstorm with me because he does not want to compromise. I didn't say to him, "I am changing the name." I said to him, "Let's think of some new ones." On three different occassions, he has just said, "No." He doesn't think he has to compromise with me.

    So yeah, I totally get what y'all are saying. I also want to compromise, but he isn't allowing me. I have just as much as a right as he does to decide what to name my child and if he doesn't want to compromise, I'll simply exercise that right.

    In my view, I have simply noticed via the nickname, that this wasn't the name I wanted for the child. Yes, I could have thought about that in my original conversation with him, but I didn't until they started calling the child this name. Once I realized it, I tried talking to him multiple times about it and he always says "Drop it." It's not a big deal to me. I just resent the fact that he is trying to force me to agree to this and he doesn't even recognize the fact that I don't have to.

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