Wyoming Name Change Law

Name Change – General – Wyoming

Note:  This summary is not intended to be an all inclusive discussion of the law applicable to an action for change of name in the State of Wyoming, but does include basic and other provisions.

Name Change Action Allowed: In Wyoming, an adult may change their name by filing an action in the District Court with appropriate forms.

Who is an adult? A person who has attained the age of 18 years is considered an adult.

Who is a minor? A person who has not attained the age of 18 years is considered a minor.

Is there any reason why a person might not be allowed to change his or her name? Yes.  The court must find that the requested name change is proper and not detrimental to the interests of any other person.  A person is not allowed to change their name in order to avoid judgments or legal actions against him or her, or to avoid debts and obligations.  A person can not change their name to defraud any person.

Must the child agree to the name change? No, but the court may consider the wishes of a child old enough to express their wishes in considering whether to grant the Petition.

Must the parent(s) of the minor agree to the name change? No, but the court may consider the wishes of a parent in considering whether to grant the Petition.

Requirements for Name Change Order: For an order of name change to be granted, the court must find that there are proper reasons for the change of name and that it is not detrimental to the interests of any other person.  A change of name upon marriage, dissolution, or divorce meets these requirements.

Is Publication of a Notice Required? Yes.  Notice of the filing of the petition with a statement of the relief requested and the date of hearing must be published as a way of giving public notice of the requested name change.  The publication must be made by the clerk for four consecutive weeks in a newspaper published in the county where the complaint is filed; or if there is no newspaper published in the county, then in a newspaper published in this state, and of general circulation in such county; if it be made in a daily newspaper, one insertion a week shall be sufficient; and it must contain a summary statement of the object and prayer of the complaint, mention the court wherein it is filed, and notify the person or persons thus to be served when they are required to answer, and that judgment by default may be rendered against them if they fail to appear.

Who must be provided notice of the Petition? The general public by way of publication in a newspaper published within the county.

Can individuals “object” to my Petition for Name Change? Yes.  Any reasonable objections made to the court may influence the court’s findings as to whether the change of name is proper and not detrimental to the interests of any other party.

Procedures: The process for obtaining a name change for an adult in the State of Wyoming begins with the filing of a Petition with the District Court in the jurisdiction in which Petitioner resides.  The Petition informs the Court of the Petitioner’s name, the name the Petitioner wishes to adopt, his place of birth, the length of time the Petitioner has been a resident of the County, and the reasons for the requested change of name.

After the Petition is filed and the required fee is paid, the Clerk will give public notice by publication in the same manner as service by publication upon nonresidents in civil actions.

After publication is complete, the Court, if satisfied that the change of name is proper and not detrimental to the interests of any party, may issue an Order granting the relief requested.

Additional Information and Instructions:

Statutes:

Verified petition to be presented; information to be shown in petition; order of court making change; record to be made:
Every person desiring to change his name may petition the district court of the county of the petitioner’s residence for the desired change. The petition shall be verified by affidavit setting forth the petitioner’s full name, the name desired, a concise statement of the reason for the desired change, the place of his birth, his place of residence and the length of time he has been an actual bona fide resident of the county in which the petition is filed. If the court is satisfied that the desired change is proper and not detrimental to the interests of any other person, it shall order the change to be made, and record the proceedings in the records of the court. [Wyoming Statutes, Title 1 Code of Civil Procedure, Chapter 25 Change of Name, Section 1-25-101.]

Residence requirement:
A person petitioning for a change of name shall have been a bona fide resident of the county in which the petition is filed for at least two (2) years immediately preceding filing the petition.  [Wyoming Statutes, Title 1 Code of Civil Procedure, Chapter 25 Change of Name, Section 1-25-102.]

Notice to be given by publication:
Public notice of the petition for a change of name shall be given in the same manner as service by publication upon nonresidents in civil actions.  [Wyoming Statutes, Title 1 Code of Civil Procedure, Chapter 25 Change of Name, Section 1-25-103.]

Change of name in adoption proceedings:
In all cases of the adoption of children in the manner provided by law, the court before which such adoption proceeding is held, may change the name of any child so adopted and make an order to that effect, which shall be recorded in the records of the proceeding of adoption. Each child who has heretofore, in Wyoming, been adopted according to law, may have his or her name changed to that of the parents who have adopted him or her, upon the parents, who have adopted such child, on behalf of such child, filing a petition therefor.   [Wyoming Statutes, Title 1 Code of Civil Procedure, Chapter 25 Change of Name, Section 1-25-104.]

Court Rules:

Rule 4. Process.

. . .
(g) Publication of notice. – The publication must be made by the clerk for four consecutive weeks in a newspaper published in the county where the complaint is filed; or if there is no newspaper published in the county, then in a newspaper published in this state, and of general circulation in such county; if it be made in a daily newspaper, one insertion a week shall be sufficient; and it must contain a summary statement of the object and prayer of the complaint, mention the court wherein it is filed, and notify the person or persons thus to be served when they are required to answer, and that judgment by default may be rendered against them if they fail to appear.

(h) When service complete; how proved. – Service by publication shall be deemed complete at the date of the last publication, when made in the manner and for the time prescribed in the preceding subdivisions; and such service shall be proved by affidavit.. . .
(m) Return; proof of service.

(1) Return. – The person serving the process shall make proof of service thereof to the court promptly and in any event within the time during which the person served must respond to the process. Failure to make proof of service does not affect the validity of the service.

(2) Proof of Service. – Proof of service of process shall be made as follows:

. . .
(iv) If by publication, by the affidavit of publication together with the certificate of the clerk as to the mailing of copies where required. [Wyoming Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 4 Process.]

Other Name Change References:

Age of majority; rights on emancipation:

(a) Upon becoming eighteen (18) years of age, an individual reaches the age of majority and as an adult acquires all rights and responsibilities granted or imposed by statute or common law, except as otherwise provided by law.. . .
[Wyoming Statutes, Title 14 Children, Article 1 In General, Section 14-1-101.]


Inside Wyoming Name Change Law