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nzv

Name change after N400 was filed

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I live in California and I send in my N400 application and just got the FBI finger printing done. In the N400 I had requested a name change but I just learned that this region does not do the oath ceremony at a court so I cannot get a name change as part of the naturalization process. Could I petition for a name change through the Superior Court of California?. If I do, I see a few scenarios:

The court approves the name change before my interview then can I bring the decree to the interview and have my naturalization certificate issued with the new name? Would this be accepted and a naturalization certificate issued with the new name?

The interview happens before the court approves the name change then do I petition USCIS for a name change on my naturalization certificate? Is that possible?

Has anybody got any experience with this and is there anything I can do now and before the interview?

 

Thanks

NV

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Normal name changes are done in district courts, not the superior court.

 

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I presume by normal name change you mean via marriage/divorce which would imply a court document to support it. However my name change is not a result of a marriage/divorce and the applications in California NC-100, NC-110 etc. are applications to the "Superior Court of California". Irrespective of the court does name change after N400 was submitted cause issues such as redo name check with FBI causing additional delay or will the court order for name change be accepted at interview without delaying the oath process because my green card will have the old name. 

 

Thanks

NV

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No, with "normal" name changes I mean outside of naturalization.

People can change their names whenever they want, they just have to go through a court process. You are right that it is done at the Superior Court in California. I remembered it wrong. I knew an American who went through that, but that was a long time back.

If the name change is approved by the court, you get the court order, which you submit with the N-400. There also is a line about "Other names used" on the N-400. That's where the old name would go, and they would do a name check with both old and new name. I guess that if the new name isn't approved yet, you could still put the new name in the "other names used" line, assuming that you may already be using the new name informally.

You also use the court order to have your name change recorded at the DMV, social security office, etc.

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I just wanted to update everyone on this:

I submitted my N400 with a request for a name change. A month or so later I realized that California (my county) does not allow a name change at the oath ceremony because the ceremony has over a 1000 applicants and is not held at a court nor is it administered by a judge. So if you are in this situation then you can apply through the court and get you name changed (which is what I did) and during the interview bring this up. In my case they took a copy of the court order and changed my name in their computer system. The letter for the oath ceremony arrived with the new name and so did the naturalization certificate that I received after the oath ceremony.

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