About a month ago, I went to the local circuit court and filed a petition for a name change. It was a surprisingly straightforward process and afterwards, I was told to expect to get an answer with a month. Well it has been nearly 5 weeks and I hadn’t heard anything, so I called the court. The news wasn’t great. The court hadn’t actually submitted the application. In order to file a name change in my county, you need to submit both an application and a draft of the order. When I filed my name change previously, I had both filled out but was told I only needed the application. As a result my name change never went anywhere. It was simply listed as “in progress” but never actually went to a judge. I had to go back to the local circuit court to correct my previous application.
My first trip to the circuit court had been fairly uneventful, this second trip was less so. I had to take time off of work again to go since the court is only open during my work hours. The experience at the court was much more frustrating this time. I told the clerk (a different person from last time) what I had been told on the phone and that I needed to submit a draft order for my previous application. The clerk blamed me for not knowing that I needed it the first time before giving me a blank draft order. The clerk explicitly told me not to date it or fill in the case number field, which seemed odd. I filled it out as instructed and gave it back to the clerk, who looked at my new name and then laughed at it to my face. I asked the clerk if she needed the case number or any information so that they could connect it to my previous application and was told “no, we can figure it out”, which didn’t inspire a lot of confidence. I ended up leaving, not very certain that I had actually accomplished anything.
Fortunately, it appears that the circuit court was able to “figure it out”. I checked my case online the next day and it now said that a draft order had been submitted. This update also explained why they didn’t want me to date the order. The court clerk back-dated the order for the date that I submitted the first application, making it look like no mistakes had happened. I find this very funny. Now that everything has been submitted, it should not be long until my name change goes through. According to the court, I should receive an answer within a week or two. I would like to have it before October for coming out at work, so this timetable is cutting it a tad closer than I would prefer. However, as long as there are no more issues, I should be fine.