Morgan County Name Change Process
Note: This process applies to people aged 19+. Those 18 and under have a completely different set of rules.
This process is expected to take anywhere from 6-10 weeks before you can obtain the court order, so start accordingly. Add another 4 weeks before you have an updated ID.
Here is the official Morgan County Name Change Guidelines. It is a good reference to have, however it is incorrect and incomplete compared to how the process actually works. Calling the office also doesn’t help as the staff might not give the most accurate information over the phone.
Documents required when filing the name change petition:
- Unexpired driver’s license or government issued photo ID
- Social Security card
- Certified copy of your birth certificate
- Morgan County lease/deed if your address on ID isn’t correct
- ALEA background check
- FBI background check
- Petition to the court (PS-12)
At the Decatur police department you will need to obtain 2 copies of your fingerprints on FBI Blue Cards. This service is free.
Print these forms:
- ALEA background check: The application is the first page. Pages 3 and 4 are instructions
- FBI background check
Fill out the forms, get them notarized (if needed), include necessary fees, paperwork, and the fingerprints. Then send in the forms. ALEA takes around 4-6 weeks and the FBI takes 6-8 weeks.
Note: If your address on your ID is not correct, don’t worry. Just make sure to bring a copy of your lease or deed to certify that you live in Morgan County.
Once you receive your background checks back from ALEA and the FBI you can continue with the process.
Filing for the name change
Next, print a petition to the court. Fill out the blanks then print and sign. It must be notarized.
Gather all your paperwork from the list at the beginning of this guide. Every document listed is required.
Note: The probate office does not accept debit or credit cards when paying filing fees. It is highly advisable to bring cash with you, but if you forget, they do have an ATM downstairs in the café with a high fee. They published that the filing fee is $22 but “subject to change”.
Turn in everything at the probate office on the 2nd floor of the Morgan County Courthouse. Pay your fee and they will call you when it is processed and ready to pick up. This should only take a few days.
Once you get the call you can go pick up the court order. Its highly advised to get multiple copies of your court order while you are picking it up, so bring some cash for this purpose.
Note: This guide is written from the perspective of someone without any criminal background. Name changes have been difficult to obtain with a record from the experience of the local community. It is highly advisable that you consult with an attorney if you are seeing a legal name change with prior criminal history.