Colorado Name Change Requirements

General Summary of Name Change Laws

The Courts are often willing to accept name changes for almost any legitimate reason. However, the granting of an application for change of name is discretionary with the Court. For an order/decree/judgment of name change to be granted, the Court must find compliance with the requirements of notice and the requirements for the allegations in the application. The Court must also find good and sufficient reason for the change, find the change consistent with the public interest and if the change of name is for a minor child, find that the change is in the best interests of the minor child.

You cannot change your name for a fraudulent purpose, such as to avoid debts, you cannot change to a name that could affect the rights of another person, such as a celebrity, you cannot use a curse word, racial slur, obscene and/or an offensive word as part of your name and you cannot change to a name that would cause deliberate confusion (for example, a name with punctuation and/or a number in it).

IMPORTANT NOTE: For name change actions which involve a minor, courts typically seek written consent from every adult who retains legal rights over the minor. As such, the applicant must directly notify each of these parties (Service of Process).

Again, please remember, our name change materials are designed to cover simple, uncontested name changes ONLY. Our products/services should not be used if you have been convicted of a felony, have claimed bankruptcy and/or have judgments/liens against you. Instead, you should consider contacting an attorney in your area. These circumstances could cause complications, which may result in your action being denied and/or contested.

Summary of Name Change Law and Procedures in Colorado for an Adult

In Colorado, an adult who wishes, for good cause shown, to change his/her name must present a Petition to that effect, verified by Affidavit, to the District or County court in the County of the Petitioner's residence.

Before presenting such Petition to the District or County Court, the Petitioner MUST first complete the required fingerprint based criminal history checks (must be conducted within ninety (90) days prior to filing the application). The Petitioner must submit a criminal history check from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at the time their case is filed. The Court where you will be filing your name change action should provide you (the Petitioner) with two fingerprint cards.

In order to initiate the required fingerprint based criminal history checks, you should contact your local law enforcement office to be fingerprinted (once you have obtained the aforementioned fingerprint card from your local court of law).

As the Petitioner, you are responsible for mailing or hand-delivering the completed fingerprint card to CBI and the FBI. Likewise, the Petitioner shall be responsible for the costs of obtaining fingerprints and other costs, which may be incurred by the Clerk's Office.

It can take up to eight (8) weeks to receive your criminal history check back from FBI. By law the CBI has up to seventy-two (72) business hours to complete the record check and place such in the mail. You will be provided with full reports from both agencies. Upon receipt of your criminal history reports, you should contact the Court where you plan to file your case for specific days or times when name change hearings are scheduled. Typically, you'll have your hearing on the same day that you file your case or a future hearing will be set.

Requirements to File for a Change of Name for an Adult in Colorado

Colorado law requires certain things before you can file for a name change. These requirements include:

  • You must be a resident of the County in which you are filing the application.
  • You must be eighteen (18) years of age or older.
  • You must not have been convicted of a felony in this state or any other state or under federal law.
  • A fingerprint-based criminal history record check must be conducted within ninety (90) days prior to the filing of the Petition.
  • Proof of publication must be completed and submitted to the Court prior to the name change being officially granted, unless the Court has ordered that publication is not required.
  • The proposed change of name would be proper and not detrimental to the interest of any other person.

Summary of Name Change Law and Procedures in Colorado for a Minor

In Colorado, the parent of the minor, on behalf of the minor, brings an application for a minor's name change, to the County OR District Court in the county of the minor's residence. The petitioning adult is the Petitioner in said legal action.

If the minor child is fourteen (14) years of age or older, before presenting such Petition to the County or District Court, the Petitioner MUST first complete the required fingerprint-based criminal history checks (for the minor). The criminal history checks must be conducted within ninety (90) days prior to the filing of the Petition. The Petitioner must submit criminal history checks (for the minor) conducted by both the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at the time the case is filed ' so this requirement must be fulfilled prior to your initial filing. In order to initiate the required fingerprint-based criminal history checks, you should contact your local law enforcement office to have the minor fingerprinted.

As the Petitioner, you are responsible for mailing or hand delivering the completed fingerprint card to CBI and mailing the completed fingerprint card to the FBI. The Petitioner shall be responsible for the costs of obtaining fingerprints and any other costs related to this requirement. It can take twelve (12) to fifteen (15) weeks to receive the minor's criminal history check back from FBI. By law the CBI has up to seventy-two (72) business hours to complete the record check and place such in the mail. You will be provided with full reports from both agencies.

Remember, the criminal history checks must be conducted within ninety (90) days prior to the filing of the Petition. To be safe, you should consider submitting the FBI fingerprint card, waiting eight (8) to ten (10) weeks, then mail or hand-deliver your CBI fingerprint card.

Upon receipt of your criminal history reports, you should contact the Court where you plan to file your case for specific days or times when name change hearings are scheduled. Typically, you'll have your hearing on the same day that you file your case or a future hearing will be set.

Requirements to File for a Change of Name for a Minor in Colorado

Certain requirements exist which must be met before you can file for a name change for a minor and/or during the name change process for a minor in Colorado. These requirements include:

  • The minor child must be a resident of the county in which you are filing the Petition OR If the minor child is under the age of nineteen (19) years and is the subject of an action regarding child support, allocation of parental responsibilities, or parenting time, the Petition for Name Change must be filed in the District Court that has jurisdiction.
  • The parent/Petitioner must be eighteen (18) years of age or older.
  • If the minor child is fourteen (14) years of age or older, (s)he must not have been adjudicated as a juvenile delinquent for an offense that would constitute a felony if committed by an adult in this state or any other state or under federal law.
  • If the minor child is fourteen (14) years of age or older, a fingerprint-based criminal history record check must be conducted within ninety (90) days prior to the filing of the Petition.
  • Proof of publication must be completed and submitted to the Court prior to the name change being officially granted, unless the Court has ordered that publication is not required.
  • The proposed change of name would be proper and not detrimental to the interest of any other person.

Name Change Forms

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Minor Name Change $119.95

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