Skip to main content
Iowa Judicial Branch
Main Content

Name Change for Adults and Minor Children

I am an adult, how do I change my name?

To change your name, you can file a Petition for Change of Name and pay the $195 filing fee. See Iowa Code chapter 674.

The Iowa Judicial Branch has automated the forms for changing an adult’s name, in an action separate from a divorce case, as well as changing the name of a minor child. Free name change forms are available on the Iowa Judicial Branch website at: https://www.iowacourts.gov/for-the-public/court-forms/, and interactive interview name change forms are available at: https://www.iowacourts.gov/for-the-public/representing-yourself/iowa-interactive-court-forms/.

You must include the following information in the Petition for Change of Name:

  • Your current name.
  • Your county of residence.
  • A description including height, weight, hair and eye color, race, sex, and place and date of birth.
  • Place of residence(s) for the past five years.
  • Reason for request.
  • A legal description of all real estate in Iowa owned or in which you have any legal interest.
  • The new name you are requesting to take.

You must attach a certified copy of your birth certificate to the petition. If your birth certificate is not available, you must explain why it is not available and provide another form of identification. If you are married, the petition must be served on your spouse as well. There may be an additional cost for having the petition served on your spouse.

How do I change my name as part of a divorce case?

If you want a name change as part of a pending divorce case, include your request for name change in your petition (if you are petitioner) or in your answer (if you are respondent), and the court can include the change in the final decree. If you are changing your name as part of a divorce proceeding, you can only change your name back to either the name on your birth certificate or the name you had immediately before the marriage. See Iowa Code section 598.37.

How do I change a minor child’s name as part of a divorce case or custody case?

If there is a pending divorce or custody action, the name change of a minor child can be part of the divorce or custody proceeding. Include your request for name change in your Petition (if you are the petitioner) or Response (if you are the respondent), and the court can include the change in the final decree. See Iowa Code section 598.37.

How do I change a minor child’s name?

To change a minor child’s name, you will need to electronically file the Petition for Change of Name of Minor Child and pay the $195 filing fee.

You must include the following information in the Petition for Change of Name of Minor Child:

  • The child's current name.
  • The child’s county of residence.
  • Your name and relationship to the child.
  • A description of the child including height, weight, hair and eye color, race, sex, and place and date of birth.
  • Place of residence(s) for the past five years.
  • Reason for request
  • The new name you are requesting for the minor child.

You must attach a certified copy of the minor child's birth certificate to the petition. If the child's birth certificate is not available, you must explain why it is not available and provide another form of identification.

What if the minor child is under age 14?

Both parents stated on the child’s birth certificate must file their consent to the name change if the child is under 14 years old. If one parent does not consent to the name change, the court will set a hearing. At the hearing, the court may waive the need for consent from both parents if the court finds one of the following:

  • The parent who does not consent to the name change has abandoned the child.
  • The parent who does not consent to the name change has been ordered to contribute to the support of the child or to financially aid in the child’s birth and has failed to do so without good cause.
  • The parent who has not consented to the name change does not object to the name change after having been given due and proper notice.
What if the child is 14 years or older?

If the minor child is 14 years old or older, the name change petition must include the child’s written consent to the name change.

After the court issues a name change order, will the name change be added to my birth certificate or to my child’s birth certificate?

When the court grants a change of name, the clerk of court will provide a certified copy of the Decree of Name Change to you, and the clerk will also mail an abstract of the Decree to be filed with the Iowa Department of Health, requiring the change of name to be made on the birth certificate. See Iowa Code chapter 674.

« Back

© 2022 Iowa Judicial Branch. All Rights Reserved.