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Thinking about reclaiming your maiden name post-divorce?

When you married, you may have opted to take your spouse's last name for any number of reasons. Perhaps you felt that it would bond you in a unique way. Perhaps you thought it would be convenient. Or perhaps you just preferred your spouse's last name to your own. Whatever the reason was that you opted to take your spouse's name, it was your choice to make. And now that you have decided to divorce, it remains your decision whether to reclaim your former name or to keep your current name.

When determining whether to reclaim your maiden name, keep your spouse's name or choose a new name, you should consider a few important points. Does it matter to you that changing your name on every account and government document associated with your current name is time consuming and potentially frustrating? How would it make you feel to associate yourself with your spouse's name now that he or she is no longer your spouse?

If you do not want to reclaim your maiden name and do not want to associate with your spouse’s name, you may opt to choose a new name altogether. A family-naming expert recently explained to The Huffington Post that, “Some women don’t like their maiden names, so they pick a maternal grandmother’s last name or the name of another relative to whom they were very close. And some are even picking combinations of names. The new name is really a reflection of frame of mind and starting fresh.”

Whatever you choose to do about your name in the wake of divorce is up to you. Please consult an experienced family law attorney about the logistics of navigating your ultimate choice.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Should You Drop Your Ex's Last Name After Divorce? 5 Things To Consider,” Lenore Skomal, July 27, 2014

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