Alabama Name Change Guidelines
This document is intended for informational use only, and is in no way intended to constitute legal advice or the opinions of the Campaign for Southern Equality. Because the law is constantly changing, the Campaign for Southern Equality cannot guarantee that this information is accurate and up-to-date. Procedures may vary by county. If you have any questions, please consult a licensed attorney.
The Alabama law related to name change can be found here: Alabama Code § 26-11-3
What you’ll need: Name Change Petition (see your local clerk of probate court), Social Security Form SS-5
Total Estimated Costs: $100.00 depending on county of residence. Cash or money order is accepted in most counties.
- Some counties may require different forms, check with the probate court in your county of residence to find the specific petition form. Fill out the petition and get the form notarized. File the notarized name change petition with probate court of the county where you live.
- The probate court may or may not set a hearing date.
- If a hearing is scheduled, the court may ask you why you want to change your name.
- The court will decide whether to grant the name change or not. If granted, the court will issue Decree Confirming Declaration as to Change of Name.
*Additional documents may be required: Letter from a therapist noting reason for name change, driver’s license or picture ID, birth certificate or current passport, copies of current bills showing current address.
Don’t Forget: Once your name change has been approved, you will need to update this with several government agencies. This includes changing your name with the Social Security Administration and the Alabama Department of Public Safety. You will need to change your name with Social Security Administration prior to changing it with the DPS. You will need to bring the copy of your name change order along with $25.00 for a corrected license.
Alabama will issue an “amended” birth certificate noting change of name and sex, but will not issue a new birth certificate replacing the original.
The fee to prepare an amended birth certificate is $15.00, which includes one certified copy. Additional copies of the same record ordered at the same time are $4.00 each.
You will need an original or certified copy of the court order for your name change, as well as an original or certified copy of a court order indicating that your gender has been changed. The fee for the court order is a separate fee, and varies from one court to another.
Because the gender change process involves more than simply filling out forms, it is recommended that you consult with a licensed attorney to help you negotiate this process.
The Alabama Law relating to changing the gender on your birth certificate can be found here: § 22-9A-19(d). It states that, “Upon receipt of a certified copy of an order of a court of competent jurisdiction indicating that the sex of an individual born in this state has been changed by surgical procedure and that the name of the individual has been changed, the certificate of birth of the individual shall be amended as prescribed by rules to reflect the changes.”
For more information, contact:
Department of Public Health
Bureau of Vital Statistics
Montgomery, AL 36130
State Board of Health
Center for Health Statistics
P.O. Box 5625
Montgomery, AL 36103-5625
(334) 206-5418; (334) 206-5426
Ms. Dorothy S. Harshbarger
State Registrar and Director
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