Can the mother change daughter's last name without father's consent? 4 Answers as of July 23, 2013

My husband and his ex-wife share joint legal custody of their 16 year old daughter. When we attended her middle school graduation, we found out that she had two last names on the diploma, her birth last name and her mothers new married name. My husband did not give up his rights to his daughter nor did he give permission to allow the additional last name either. She will be graduating high school in 2 years. Can she legally change their daughter's last name? Would there be any fraud involved if the child's name on her high school diploma is not her legal name? The mother won't honor the visitation court order and have removed my husband off the school records not allowing him access. Court order states he has all rights to these documents. Please help!

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Kevin H Pate
Kevin H Pate | Kevin H Pate
Your husband's solution is to return to court and assert her violations of the existing order of the court. It looks like this has been happening for years. Whatever his reluctance to insist she comply with a valid court order has been to date, there is no reason for that to continue, unless he prefers it to continue and not take action.
Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
Replied: 7/23/2013
John Russo | John Russo
I took a moment from researching a legal brief to answer this question since these types of question irritate me to no end. First of all please don't take this the wrong way, but your husband has to take some responsibility here, first I would suggest that you do a little research into the legal definition of JOINT CUSTODY! In a nut shell it means that both parents are suppose to be kept informed of all important issues in the child's life, also both parents are to discuss all major decisions in the child's life and agree before moving forward, if they cannot then the court will have to make the call, also it means that both parents are entitled to all the important records pertaining to the child, that means school also, and she has no right to remove him from any school list, moreover the school has no right to follow her direction on this issue. Now with that I have run into this problem on a number of occasions in my jurisdiction RI, with school officials on this very topic, and I will be blunt they are for allegedly educated people very stupid when it comes to common sense, they will hide behind the cities, or the towns legal counsel who they claim advises this approach, these are (I have to swallow hard to say this word) Lawyer's who never practiced for the most part and got their position through their Aunts, boyfriends, Cousins , Mother, who is friends with the Mayor. She cannot dictate visitation or the school issues to him, but your husband needs to file contempt motions with the family court on these issues, he really should retain a good family law attorney someone like me in your jurisdiction, it will cost a few dollars but this is not about the money it is about the child. lastly I believe what is going on with the name stuff is that she just requested the school to place that on the document, and they shamefully did, let me say something on that, if that happened here in RI and I represented him, that would end yesterday, and I would assure him that the judge would hammer both the mother and the school for allowing that, but I don't believe the name was changed legally on the birth certificate since that would require court order, unless she really did something underhanded, by lying to the court that she noticed your husband of the hearing to change the name and if she did she has another major problem. Tell your husband to start fighting back and stop complaining or saying the judge always sides with her, retain a good family law attorney, check around do some research the pit bulls are out there, not an asshole, but an attorney that knows the law and is aggressive and has a good relationship with most of the judges on the family court, or whatever your court of subject matter jurisdiction is titled.
Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
Replied: 7/23/2013
Webster & Associates | Anita Webster
No, not in Nevada.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 7/23/2013
Law Office Of Jody A. Miller
Law Office Of Jody A. Miller | Jody A. Miller
The mother cannot legally change the child's name without the father's consent as long as he pays his child support and maintains a relationship with the child. If the mother is violating the custody order the father needs to consult with an attorney and perhaps enforce his rights through action for contempt.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 7/23/2013
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