Adults should use the following steps to process a legal name change.
This kit has all of the forms and instructions for self-represented litigants to file a name change request in the civil division. There is a separate name change kit that must be filed in the family division if you are trying to file on behalf of a minor under the age of 18.
Note: You must be 18 to file a court case. If you are under 18, your parent or guardian must file the case for you.
9 steps to file for an adult name change
- Complete all of the forms in the packet.
- Download and complete the Civil Case Information Statement
- Prepare the $250 filing fee. If you are filing electronically, you can use a credit card. If you are mailing or delivering your papers in person, you need a check or money order for $250 payable to Treasurer, State of NJ.
Note: If you are changing the names of multiple adult family members, the $250 fee covers all name change applications. However, if any family members are under the age of 18, you must file a separate case and use the packet for name changes in the family division.
Do you qualify for a fee waiver?
- Check your forms and make sure they are complete. Remove all instruction sheets. Make sure you have signed all the forms where it says to do so. If you are mailing or delivering your paperwork to the court, you must make two copies of each form. One copy will be sent with the originals to the court; the other is for your records.
- Form A: Verified Complaint
- Form A1: Certification of Confidential Information for Name Change
- Form B: Order Fixing Date of Hearing
- Form C: Final Judgment
- Form C1: Final Judgment Addendum
- Case Information Statement
- $250 Payment
- Upload your forms in the Judiciary Electronic Document System (JEDS).You can pay the fee with a credit card. You also can mail or deliver your documents to the court. First, make two copies of your documents.
Mail the originals plus one copy to the civil division of Superior Court in the county where you live. Include a stamped, self-addressed envelope and a check or money order for the filing fee. Send by certified mail with return receipt. The post office can tell you how to do this.
- Review copies returned from the court. The court will return copies of the Verified Complaint, Certification of Confidential Information for Name Change and Order Fixing Date of Hearing to you. The case docket number will be written on all the copies. The docket number is very important because it identifies your case. It also lets the court know how to find your case. You must use the docket number on all future papers you send to the court about your case. The court will fill in the date on the Order Fixing Date of Hearing. That is the day you will appear before the judge to get the Final Judgment.
- If you do not have pending criminal or delinquent charges in New Jersey, skip this step.
If you have pending criminal or delinquent charges, you must notify law enforcement of your name change application. You must send notification at least 20 days before your hearing date.
Send copies of the following documents:
- Verified Complaint,
- Certification of Confidential Information for Name Change
- Order Fixing Date of Hearing
For charges filed by any county prosecutor, send the forms to the county prosecutor in the county where you are filing the name change case.
For charges filed by the attorney general, send the forms to the Division of Criminal Justice (see Step 8).
Send by certified mail, return receipt requested.
- Notify the State of New Jersey of your Application for a Name Change. You must send notification at least 20 days before your hearing date. Send a copy of the Order Fixing Date of Hearing to:
Director, Division of Criminal Justice
ATTN: Records and Identification Section
R. J. Hughes Justice Complex
25 Market Street
P. O. Box 085
Trenton, NJ 08625-0085
Note: If you have criminal charges pending against you in New Jersey, you must also include a copy of the Verified Complaint and Certification of Confidential Information for Name Change. Send by certified mail, return receipt requested.
- Complete the Proof of Mailing (Form D) and send to the court. Be sure to attach the green certified mail receipt(s) to the Proof of Mailing. Send the Proof of Mailing to the court. Keep copies of the form and the receipts for your files.
Prepare for Court
You should arrive in court on the date set for your hearing on the Order Fixing Date for Hearing. Be sure to bring with you proof of your current name. Proof could include a birth certificate, marriage certificate, or passport.
Steps to Take After Your Name Change
- Order certified copies of the Final Judgment and Final Judgment Addendum. Certified copies have a raised seal. You will need at least two certified copies of each document. Licensed drivers will need three copies of each document.
Copies can be ordered through JEDS . There is a $25 fee for each copy of each document. The fee can be paid with a credit card.
- Send one set of certified copies to the New Jersey Department of the Treasury. You must include a $50 check or money order payable to the Treasurer, State of New Jersey. This must be done within 45 days after the date of the name change. Mail the documents, the check, and stamped, self-addressed envelope to:
Department of Treasury
Division of Revenue
Judgment Name Change Unit
P. O. Box 453
Trenton, NJ 08646
- Send one set of certified copies to the registrar of vital statistics in the state where you were born. The office of the registrar is located in the capital city of the state in which you were born. Check to see if the office requires a fee.
If you were born in New Jersey, the address for this office is:
Bureau of Vital Statistics
Attn: Vital Records Modifications Unit
P. O. Box 370 Trenton, NJ 08625
- Bring one set of certified copies to the New Jersey Motor Vehicles Commission. You must go to the agency in person to change your driver’s license, car registration, or handicapped or non-driver identification card. You can go to at any motor vehicle agency location or regional service center. This must be done within two weeks after the effective date listed on the Final Judgment. The effective date is not the date of the hearing or the date the final judgment was signed. The effective date is the date you may begin using your assumed name. You will need other forms of ID in order to get a new driver’s license or ID card. Go to njmvc.gov for more information on how to change the name on your license or identification card.