Wisconsin Statutes Actions and Proceedings in Special Cases (Ch. 775 to 788) § 786.37. Change of name, notice of petition

(1) Before petitioning the court to change or establish a name, the petitioner shall publish a class 3 notice under ch. 985 stating the nature of the petition and when and where the petition will be heard.

(2) If the petition is for the name change of a minor under 14 years of age who has 2 living parents and if the petition is being made by one parent of the minor, the petitioner shall, in addition to publishing the notice under sub. (1), serve a copy of the notice and petition on the nonpetitioning parent in the same manner as a summons is served under s. 801.11(1) .

(3) This section does not apply to the name change of a minor if the parental rights to the minor of both parents have been terminated, guardianship and legal custody of the minor have been transferred under subch. VIII of ch. 48, the minor has been placed in a permanent foster home, and the guardian and legal custodian of the minor have petitioned to change the minor's name to the name or names of the minor's foster parents.

(4) If a petitioner requests that his or her petition to change or establish a name remain confidential, the clerk of court shall ensure that the name change petition is confidential upon the filing of the petition and sub.(1) does not apply to the petitioner.  The court may require the petitioner to comply with sub. (1) if the petitioner is unable to show, by a preponderance of the evidence, that publication of his or her petition could endanger him or her and that he or she is not seeking a name change in order to avoid a debt or conceal a criminal record.


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