Restoring Your Former Name

Did you know that you can change your name back to your former name in your divorce? Nebraska law allows for former names (sometimes referred to as “maiden name”) to be restored in a divorce. If you wish to have your former name restored, here’s what you need to know.

Include the request to have your former name restored in your complaint or counterclaim.

If you are the plaintiff, you should include a specific request to have your former name restored in your complaint – the initial document you file with the court asking for your marriage be dissolved. If you are the defendant, make sure you file a counterclaim in response to the complaint. In your counterclaim, you should include a request to have your former name restored.

You must ask for this in order for the court to grant it. If you’re unsure whether you wish to have your former name restored, you may want to include the request anyway. That way, if you do ultimately decide it’s what you want, you’ve already asked for it. If you have already filed either your complaint or counterclaim and have not asked for your former name to be restored, talk to your attorney about amending your pleading.

At the time of settlement or trial, make sure that there is a provision granting restoration of your former name in the decree.

This, too, can be a simple sentence in your decree. If your case goes to trial, you may request the name change while you’re testifying. In any event, be sure your final decree states that your former name will be restored.

After your decree is entered (signed by the judge), submit a separate Order Restoring Former Name to the judge for signature.

You can obtain a certified copy of this separate order to obtain a new social security card, driver’s license, etc.