Child's birth certificate, please help

Kandice - posted on 10/11/2010 ( 200 moms have responded )

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I have a complicated situation that i need help with, please!! Okay, i have never filed for my daughter's birth certificate, she is 2 now. Her biological father has nothing to do with her and hasn't for 2 years, he is now in rehab for 24 months. He signed the form in the hospital as being her father. I'm just wondering since i never filed for her birth certificate if i can file for it now and have my last name on it instead? Also, me and the father were NEVER married, never went to court for any kind of custody issues. I don't want any child support or ANYTHING from him, i just want my babygirl to have my last name! Please helpp!

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Sherri - posted on 10/11/2010

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I found this and hope it helps.

How to change a minor child's last name
Changing the name of a minor child, unless during adoption proceedings, requires a court order; the court will consider the child’s best interests.

It is possible, however, to change a child’s name without the process of adoption through petitioning the court for a name change by filing certain paperwork. How this works will vary from state to state, and while in the simplest cases you may be able to fill out the forms yourself, you will likely need to consult a lawyer or a legal aid society. You will also need to demonstrate that you have notified (or, if he is long gone, attempted to notify) the child’s natural father
of your desire to change the child’s name. In some states, the natural father’s consent is required; in others, it is not. The court will weigh whether or not the name change is in the child’s best interests and will accept or deny the petition accordingly.

http://www.essortment.com/lifestyle/chan...

Sharon - posted on 10/15/2010

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If the child has a social security card - the birth cert with the childs' legal name is in existence. that is a fact and nothing but legal proceedings will change that.

The father is established and on the certificate. EVEN if you could forge a document and remove the name of the father - in order for the judge to grant an adoption, an attempt at finding and notifying the purported father has to be made.

HOWEVER - since he has not seen her, not contacted her, not supported her, you can file for abandonment - dig in your records and find your last bit of proof of when he saw her/supported her - it'll be up to him to prove he has made an effort to see and support his child. Kind of hard to do from rehab and that will be another negative for the judge. Do not encourage contact or support.

Keep in mind that someday your daughter will want to know about her bio dad and you'll need something for her.

A simple name change will not change the fact that he is the acknoweldged father in the eyes of the law.

Sherri - posted on 10/11/2010

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Okay I am confused you don't apply for a birth certificate you fill out the paper work in the hospital and they automatically file the appropriate paper work with the town your child was born in. The only thing we had to do was then go to the town offices 2 wks later to pick up the birth certificate. It now costs $10 for each birth certificate copy.

Erica - posted on 10/12/2010

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ok someone might have already said this becuase i didnt read everything but if his name is on it... you have to go to court to have her name changed legally. I believe you should be able to send him papers asking him to sign rights over and then you fiance should be able to adopt.

[deleted account]

The process is pretty easy. I think you will have to apply for her birth certificate, his name is already on it, they won't change it, it is a legal document. If his last name is listed on her Medicaid card or social securtiy card you have to change it at the social security office. Anyone who has a name change has to do it with the social security office, all you need is the social security card & birth certicicate, I changed my madien to married name in about 20 min with one page of paper work. Can't imagine it would be much harder for kids. I don't think they will take his name off the birth certificate though.

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Rande - posted on 10/21/2010

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This varies from state to state. You stated that you're in CA and that he is in rehab in IL. If they are going to do an interstate case through IL, IL is pro both mother AND father state. Many states are going pro father's rights. I'm in no way siding with the father here. However I do know my brother in law does have custody of his children and lives in IL. Applying for Birth Certificates also vary from state to state. Changing names and all of that. Laws have also changed over the yrs. The state of VA and the hospital messed up and spelled my oldest son's name wrong and didn't put my husband's name on his BC and we had to go back through later and provide the proper paperwork that stated how our son's name was really spelled and when my husband and I were actually married without him having to sign paterinty papers. The process in 1994 was simple, but now from what I've been told is a lot harder. My parents also changed my name, which in 1980 was simple but now again laws have changed. So talking to a lawyer would be in your best interest. Laws change, laws vary from state to state. And because you are in 2 different states it may go down to an interstate case, and you do know where he is. The courts tend to look at all factors involved. They can do conference calls and web conferences now a days for court cases except for deployed service members. That and you never know what a family member may do to help the father. They could hire a private investigator to search boards, emails, ETC like this for court cases. I had that happen to a friend of mine on a totally different type of case. And if you do run the add in the paper, you run the add in the paper where he doesn't live, where he cant see it.

Lelanie - posted on 10/21/2010

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I Dont Think you will have a problem but go to the department were you have to register and ask them, or go to the hospital you had her and ask them how you go about getting a birth certificat after 2 years they will be able to help you with that

Moerieda - posted on 10/21/2010

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Hi Kate, of course you can register your child's birth with your last name, why did you wait so long anyway? I am sure you have your own personal reasons for that but yes, your child can have your last name.
Good luck.

Teri - posted on 10/21/2010

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Kandice,
Hey, my name is Teri. If I were you I could call the register of deeds in the county your baby girl was born in and see what their rules and regulations are about getting names changed. Some places you have to have a court order, some may have the fahter sign papers to have her name changed, and you may also have to pay a fee, but definately call and see what their process is for name changes. Hope this was some help to you.

Teri

Tonya - posted on 10/21/2010

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Sweetie you can file for the birth certificate but her name will remain the same as the hospital put on it when your daughter born to change her name back to yours you will have to file with your local courts for a hearing and it normally cost.

Nikki - posted on 10/21/2010

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I noticed someone mentioned just going to the SS office to get your daughter's name changed. Personally, if I were you I would contact a lawyer, they usually do a free 1st consultation, and see what your options are. I live here in Ohio and my kids dad and I were never married. Never went to court for custody issues either. I have full legal custody unless he wants to take me to court to try to get some.When I took him for child support the first thing he asked was if he could sign off of the kids. He was told then that he couldn't do tha unless there was someone willing to adopt them first. That was the only time he has mentioned it. My babies are 10 and 8 and never see their dad anymore. Get some legal consultation and see what can be done. With the father already on the birth certificate, he may have to be willing to sign off first before anything can be done. Just don't get your hopes up. Good luck!

Sue - posted on 10/21/2010

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The name you gave your daughter on the paper work in the hospital will be the name that appears on the birth certificate.

Sunet Smit - posted on 10/21/2010

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I had a kind of simmilar situation. I was married and then my husband left me a week before i found out i was pregnant. He did'nt want to come back after finding out i was pregnant with his child so i devorced him. I never changed my Id to his surname so it was still on my maiden name. When i had to register my son I registered him on my maiden name because i did not have any contact with his father and still don't. My son is now 2 and has never met his real dad and has my surname not his dad's. I don't think he'll ever meet his dad and that is not because im stopping him. his dad does not want to meet him. At least my son has a surname from someone who is there with him all the time and he knows that he belongs and is loved by someone he knows.. I am also in a relationship and have a baby girl with my partner My daughter has her father's surname because he is present in her life and my son has mine so even if he grows older and asks abouth the surname thing ill be able to tell him that he has mom's surname and his sister has daddys surname (bacause my partner is the only father that my son has ever known in his young little life so far

Delores - posted on 10/20/2010

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Kandice every you want to do, you can just do one by one start with her birth certificate go to your local social security office and ask questions about name change, as far as her father and wanting him to give up his legal rights you you will need a lawyer cause your going to need to file papers and send it to her father and wait for him to respond and if he contest then you all will have to go to court and it is very hard for him to try to take your away because he has to prove that you are a unfit parent and you will have to go to court if he does try but you don't have anything to worry about unless you are unfit and it dnt seem like it. you can also look up some these answer to your question online according to your state laws, good luck don't worry yourself too much everything will be fine :-)...

Kelly - posted on 10/20/2010

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You should definetly have her registered its legal isn't it to have her registered. tI thought you got 12 weeks max to do that. About the name thing, I reckon!
I think he should be named on the certificate and acknowledged. However given your situation definetly give her your name!

Gillian - posted on 10/20/2010

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to debbi, it depend where you live, in south africa only a hand full of hospitals do file for that and the others you have to go do it your self,

Barbara - posted on 10/20/2010

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Florida is different. By the father signing the birth certificate he is owning up to his responsibility and is a legal guardian regardless of whether the parents are married or not. I am not married to him (still together) and both our children have his last name (it was very important to him and to me also that they do). The nurse in the hospital said it doesn't matter when you fill out the paperwork. I remember she said "You can name him Abraham Lincoln if you want." Kandice you have to check in your area. Sometimes even if the parents aren't married but the father signs the birth certificate then you do need his authorization in some places and some you don't, Call the department that handles this. Vital Statics, health department etc (different in different areas). You might be able to petition the court stating that you don't want the father to have any custody at all due to his drug problems.

Chantelle - posted on 10/20/2010

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Contact Bunny hop - they usually do these for you. They would probably know what proceedures to follow. In my case I only did it 3 months later. I had to get an affidavit from the police, which i had to send to bunny hop explaining why I was applying late. Hope this helps a little.

Cindy - posted on 10/20/2010

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my granddaughter just had a baby 3 weeks ago and didn't have to wait 3 months on getting the birth certificate. And the baby's given name was on his SS card. I'm not sure what u could do at this point where u have given the baby his name....

Rita - posted on 10/20/2010

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I wasnt married to my xboyfriend and I gave my children my name. It doesnt matter if the fathers name is on the registration or not. Go to the dept of mental hygene . Yes you can do it.I think it cost 20.00.

Deerhunter1075 - posted on 10/20/2010

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In WI it is different. I have it both ways. My 3 older kids I would need their father's permission only because we were married. Now with my youngest, it is completely different because his father and I are not married. I have all say on my youngest, I can do what I want, live wherever I want, whatever. Their father was already informed that just because his name is on the birth certificate, he has absolutely no say on our son unless we get married or go to court. That was told not by me, but by a court official. It depends on where you live and what the laws are there, every place is different.

Leslie - posted on 10/20/2010

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In my dealing with this kind of thing is she has his last name and unless he signs all his rights away you more then likely have to keep his last name.. But however if your soon to be husband wants to adopt you have to he will have to file to adopt her... What they usually do is run it in the news paper and it doesn't have to be the county he or you live in for 30 days and as long as nobody protest it then he will be bale to adopt her easier.. That in my opinion will be the easiest way to go about it... That might not be what you wanted to hear or do, but that might be your best option...

JEN - posted on 10/20/2010

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I can only change my childrens last name with the fathers permission and he will never agree to that so it is what it is.

Deerhunter1075 - posted on 10/20/2010

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Hi Kandice,
If I'm correct, being that you were never married that means you have sole custody. Which means you can do what you want regarding your child, the father has absolutely no say. He can however file a motion if he dissagrees and try to explain his side to the judge. But being he hasn't had anything to do with the child since birth I find that hard to believe that he would get anything out of it. Hope this helps and good luck.

Jen - posted on 10/20/2010

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I am not a lawyer so please check with a lawyer or your local dept of vital records. I thought the hospital filed the paperwork for the birth certificate. I had 2 children out of wed lock, 1 where the father didnt sign and one where the father did and I never filed anything the hospital did.. As for changing her name, you may have to go to court for that. if he isnt in her life you may have to file for custody and have your attorney file to take his parental rights away, hopefully he will comply. Good luck and check with the vital records department about the birth certificate.

Stephanie - posted on 10/20/2010

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My girls were born in cali an all I have to do is go to the county clerks office an fill out a short form an pay $20 the hospital does everything for you. Thats probably what they want you to do an you will probably have to go to a lawyer

Heather-Lynn - posted on 10/20/2010

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so you never filed for her birth cert and as long as she was never registered, I don't see why you can't.
Where I live you have to register your babe with city hall and then send away for the birth cert. if you never sent in any papers I don't see why if she is living with you there is a problem. I have sole custody of my oldest I just sent his father papers saying I was changing his name and that was that. But you really need to look up the proper family court procedure in you state. It is probably a BORiNG read, but that is the only place you will find answers. If you never sent in the papers he signed I would't worry.

Louisa - posted on 10/20/2010

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According to my husband, a retired police officer in AR, You must file paperwork in the state of AR where the daughter was born, county where born to have the name changed. It will probably be a matter of paperwork. You need the original birth certificate which can be gotten for about $15.00. Then, your SO could adopt her after you get married. I'm sure the Navy JAG officer will know this as well. Best Wishes!

Charity - posted on 10/20/2010

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It depends on what state you are from. My sister gave her baby her last name instead of the daddy's last name but she still had to name him as the father. She is a Florida resident. Florida requires you name the father for a few legal reasons. You'd have to look up what your state laws are.

Shelly - posted on 10/20/2010

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So I think there are two issues:
The first is getting a copy of the birth certificate and that you should be able to get at your county court house. It will ALWAYS have his name on it no matter what you do becuase even if you have her name changed they will not go back and modify that document, they will simply add an amendment to it stating that you changed her name. If you go to the County Clerks or Registrars office and for a fee they will provide you with a certified copy.
The second issue is changing the name. I changed my sons name becuase his father wasn't around and it was really expensive. I did have to hire an attorney, it cost over $3000 (and that was 13 years ago). It was a long process I had to post an announcement in the newspaper, service him with papers, and then go to court. And wouldn't you know it even though he wasn't seeing our son he decided to fight it - I won and the courts allowed the name change and I'm glad I did it. But, it turned out to not be that big of deal. Six years later I got married and so now my son still has a different name, he actually mostly goes by my married name (his choice now that he's 15) and uses his "legal name on school papers etc.
The way his birth certificate works is that it is the same as when he was born and then the court document is attached to it showing that his name was changed. is birth father is still listed beause he would never agree to adoption.

Hope that helps

Sandy - posted on 10/20/2010

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What you did in the Hospital is Legal. You will have to legally get it changed at this point. Sorry, but it won't be that easy. Just because you didn't get a "copy" yet, it is still already legal and on file.

Diane - posted on 10/20/2010

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Yes you can... All of my kids were born at home and at the time, their dad didn't want to do the birth certificate thing. What he had to do was contact the state capital and get the info from them. It required him to make 2 trips with them to Austin (Texas) and they got their cert. It will be a lot easier if they were born in a hospital, but I DEFINITELY OPPOSED that. First step is to contact the human resources office at the state capitol. Check it out online - birth certificates. Again, you'll be dealing with huge bureaucracy. Just hang in there. If you were illegal, all you'd have to do was pay for one on the streest, right!!!! email me if you want; dianekay@consolidated.net.

Rebecca - posted on 10/20/2010

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In Canada we fill the papers out at hospital and then when we apply for the certificate they aready have the information the Dr. has to sign for proof of birth...so if you filled out papers at the hospital you have to use the name that you put on yhe papers......go to a laywer and have it changed to yours....

Patti - posted on 10/20/2010

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I'm not exactly sure how that is going to work, but my advice is to contact the court house in the town where your child was born and go from there. If the father is not involved you may be able to get the name changed, it might cost to do that, and you may have to get the father to sign over his parental rights or if you can prove he is unfit that may work in your favor. Hope this helps, may God be with you and bless you and your little girl.

Michele - posted on 10/20/2010

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Just to let you know, he cannot take her away from you until he has a paternity test done. Since you were not married, he cannot take her until he gets that done regardless if his name is on the birth certificate. At least that is the way it is in Georgia.

EILEEN - posted on 10/20/2010

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Yes I think that is so my son lives with his Partner they have 7 children but none of them as his surname at all .

[deleted account]

I didn't read every word of every post but I did not notice if anyone asked if the mother requested that the child carry the father's last name. I think where I live, even if the father's name is on the birth certificate as father, if the couple isn't married, the child gets the mother's maiden name.

Lola - posted on 10/20/2010

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I would say the first step is to find out where to apply for birth certificate in your county / state. Then apply for the birth certificate. The name on the birth certificate will match what is on your child's social security card, so if the last name on the social security card is the father's - then that is the name on your child's birth certificate.

If the Father's name is there, to remove it - you have to file for a legal change of name. They should be able to tell you how to do this at the place where you obtain the birth certificate. It will involve filling a form, and getting the father to sign agreeing and it has to be notarized. Once this is done, you can then take the paperwork back to the birth certificate office to get a new birth certificate issued with just your name on it. Once that is done, you take that to social security to change the name on the social security card.

How do I know this? I had to do the reverse for my first child in MD. I forgot to fill my husband's name on the form to register his birth, and so his birth certificate / passport and social security all had my maiden name (which is my legal name). I had to get a form for my husband to fill that stated he was the father, and he signed it in front of a notary public to ensure I wasn't just putting his name. Then we took the form to the birth certificate office and got the name changed and his father's name added. Once we had the new birth certificate, we went to Social Security office also to get a new card in his name.

LeAnn - posted on 10/20/2010

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What is the full name the Dept of Social Security listed on your daughters’ ID card? If you do not have this ID card, contact SS Office immediately to obtain! If it is the ex's last name, your daughters’ name will need to be legally changed. If it is not legally changed she will run into issues later on in life with work, taxes, etc. Look on-line for the courthouse in your jurisdiction that handles this process. If the ex releases all parental rights to the child, a legal name change must still be completed. If the child will be adopted AFTER the marriage taking fiancés’ last name, name change documents must still be completed and the ex must agree/sign the paperwork for the adoption. Contact the Health Department where your daughter was born to obtain filing instructions for a Birth Certificate. If you have the opportunity to create a first time Birth Certificate for your daughter… think it through carefully! The name on her Social Security Card is THE important factor moving forward in this situation. It is her personal number for everything through life! How do I know? I encountered a similar situation last year. GOOD LUCK!! YOU CAN DO IT!!

Donna - posted on 10/20/2010

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Not sure of the American system but in the UK if your not married and joint custody agreement not signed the father has NO rights other than being forced to pay child maintance!! Its a great system!! To remove the name from a birth certicate you should be able to go to soical sercuity office and fill in some paper work pay a fee and its done. If the father isnt around and you have full parental rights he should not be able to have a say.

Tonya - posted on 10/20/2010

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ok when you had her the hospital files for you. she will have your last name regardless because you were never married unless the father signed a paper at the time of her birth , before you and her left the hospital. The birth certificate can be picked up any time and if the father didn't sign at birth where it says father it will be blank. this happened to me so this is how i know this. when my child was 3 the father claimed him but the birth cert. is still blank and he has my ex husbands last name because that was my name when he was born.

Terri - posted on 10/20/2010

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I know this is a very difficult and painful situation, but I can't help wondering how you have not had a birth certificate. I assume you are not in the UK as here we have to register our baby's birth by 6 weeks and then you get the birth certificate. I hope all works out for you in the end but it sounds like you have a long legal road ahead of you

Carolyn - posted on 10/20/2010

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The birth certificate was done in the hospital for all my children. If he signed a form then he is probably on it. You have to wait 3 months in ca to get the birth certificate but it is already filed. If you wanted to remove his name you will most likely have to change it. but that only legally changes your daughters name I don't think you can actually alter the birth certificate.

Patricia - posted on 10/20/2010

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Thank you so much Sherri, I'm so glad you mentioned that. People seem to forget that a father has rights too. I'm sure if this man has had a drug problem for all of these years it didn't start AFTER Kandice met and made a baby with him. That may very well have been faulty judgment on her part. Why is she allowed to make mistakes but he is not? If he is in rehab, clearly he is trying to do something about his problem. If the tables were turned, she would want the same consideration. Imagine your parental rights being torn from you because you were ill. It's the same thing.

Fran - posted on 10/20/2010

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after reading a lot of helpful answers i must say the ONLY way to deal with this is to go to a lawyer who practices family law. she/he will know the laws of your state and ensure your daughter gets the name you want her to have. and don't worry about the money needed for a lawyer. most of them these days will work out an arrangement with you. spend the money-let the pros fix it-and have peace of mind.

Patricia - posted on 10/20/2010

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Ok, drug dependency does not a bad father or even bad person make. If the childs father has signed ANYTHING acknowledging his paternity, then he must relinquish his parental rights in order for your fiance' to adopt. If the social security card has his last name on it then THAT IS her LEGAL name. It must, therefore, be LEGALLY changed. He has as much legal right to her as you do, unless he has abandoned her. And just in case you plan to use that as your reason, remember that simply being absent from her life does not constitute abandonment. This is particularly true if you have made no attempts to stay in contact with him on her behalf. Put yourself in his shoes, and act accordingly.

Angela - posted on 10/20/2010

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If you signed and he signed the paper in the hospital she will have his last name. Doesnt matter if you never filed for it before you can get the certificate at any time. If you want her to have your last name then you will to to go to court and have her last name changed. Could take awhile and you may need good reason for the name change. Good luck.

Pamela - posted on 10/20/2010

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Contact these people
Vital Records 4815 W. Markham Street, Slot 44
Little Rock, AR 72205 501-661-2336, 800-637-9314 501-661-2717

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The Arkansas department of health website says you do need a court order to change her last name but call or write to be certain. www.arkansas.gov

Elizabeth - posted on 10/20/2010

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In order for your husband to adopt you child u have to get the fathers rights terminated. He is officially the father.... Call a family lawyer and they will tell you exactly what to do and the proper procedure to take. The father might just sign his parental rights over without a problem since he never sees your child.

Elizabeth - posted on 10/20/2010

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Whatever the hospital paperwork states is what your child's last name will be unless you have the biological father sign to change it. Why didn't the hospital send it like mine did? Just wondering?

Stacey - posted on 10/20/2010

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Depends on what hospital / county you had her in. My daughter is 4 and I actually am sending for a copy of her birth certificate this week. I have not needed it as of yet, but I will need it next year for Kindergarten. I went online and printed a copy of the request for it. Once you know the county / hospital she was born in, find their county web site online. Then you can usually search for "birth certificates". It should not be too difficult. My daughter was born at Bethesda North, in Hamilton County, Ohio. All it asks is the full name that was given at the hospital when she was born, Place of Birth, Parents names. You will also have to send a check/money order for the amount they charge for a copy along with the address where you want it sent and the applicants signature. Good Luck to you. I hope this helped out!

Beatriz - posted on 10/20/2010

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i think you would have to try to get sole custody on your child and if he is in rehab
your chances are very high
then you can make decisions alone
bc once the father's name is on file you need his signature for major decisions on the child
good luck!

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