|VISA Q and A on FM COCOLO 76.5 MHz
Changing your surname after a divorce
On Aired Data: November 2, 1999
|Summary of the On Aired Program
Japanese female married to an American male, but recently got a divorce.
When she got married she changed her surname to her husband’s, but since she is divorcing her husband, she would like to know what are the procedures in changing back to her maiden name.She would also like to know what would happen to their 4 year old child’s surname, who she is planning to take parental authority.
First of all, we cannot quite figure out when our client got her divorce. If 3 months have not yet passed, changing her surname will be done easily just by turning in documents to the local municipal office.
For instance let’s say her maiden name was “Tatsuko Nakano”, and her ex-husband’s name was “John Ford Douglas”. Within 6 months after her marriage, she changes her name to “Tatsuko Douglas”. When getting a divorce, many people wish to change back to their maiden name. If it is within 3 months after the divorce, all one must do is visit the family registration office, and fill in the documents for “Registration for changing surnames after divorcing a foreign national (=Gaikokujin to no Rikon ni yoru hennkou todoke)”. Keep in mind that it would be easier if you visit the office you have registered, because if not, you would have to have a copy of the registration sent to you to attach to the documents. If the three months has already passed, you would have to ask permission at the family court.Basically the mother changing the family name does not have any effect on the child’s family name. So her daughter would remain as “Masami Douglas”. But if they wish to have the same family name, first of all, the child must receive permission to have the same family name as her mother by the family court. Then they would have to turn in the “Douseki suru mune no Nyuuseki todoke” at the municipal office.