In Washington State any person over eighteen years of age can choose and use any name he or she wishes as long as the purpose of the change in the name is not to defraud another. To get a court ordered name change, you must first file a petition in the District Court of the county or other judicial district in which you live.
A petition for name change should state your current full name, your requested new name, and the reasons for the change.
An example of defrauding another would be to change names to avoid paying bills or other creditors or the escape obligations such as child support.


The process to change the name of your minor child (a "minor" is a person under the age of eighteen years) is a little more involved. However, there are often questions relating to notifying government agencies and others of the name change. It is the purpose of this informational brochure to explain the procedure for changing a name, either your name or the name of a minor child. If the marriage ends, a name change may be included in the divorce decree, or by filing a petition for name change.


If you have any questions not answered by this brochure, we will do our best to answer them or refer you to someone who can.



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