Can my baby have my boyfriend’s last name?

As a family law attorney, I’m often asked, “Can my baby have my boyfriend’s last name?” The answer is yes, but there are certain legal considerations to keep in mind.

Let’s delve into this topic further.

Can Baby Take Dad’s Last Name if Not Married?

Yes, your baby can take your boyfriend’s last name even if you’re not married. However, it’s essential to understand that the laws regarding this matter can vary by state. Some states require the father’s consent for his last name to be used, while others do not.

Does My Baby Have to Have the Father’s Last Name?

No, your baby does not have to take the father’s last name. You, as the mother, have the right to choose your child’s last name. It could be your last name, the father’s last name, or a hyphenated combination of both.

Whose Last Name Does the Baby Get if Not Married?

Again, the decision of whose last name the baby gets if the parents are not married lies with the mother in many jurisdictions. However, if both parents agree on the last name, it simplifies the process.

Whose Last Name Does the Baby Get If Not Married in Georgia?

In Georgia, like most states, if the parents are not married at the time of the baby’s birth, the baby will automatically be given the mother’s last name unless both parents agree to use the father’s last name.

Not Married But Have a Child Together?

For unmarried couples who have a child together, it’s crucial to establish paternity. Establishing paternity through legitimation in Georgia gives the father legal rights to the child and allows the child to use the father’s last name, among other benefits. Establishing paternity only through the state of Georgia does not give the father legal rights, but does require him to pay the mother for the support of the child.

Who Gets to Name the Baby Legally?

Legally, the person who has custodial rights usually gets to name the baby. In most cases, if the parents are unmarried, the mother has custodial rights unless otherwise determined by a court. It is the same in Georgia – an unmarried father has no rights to his child unless and until a court order states he does.

Does the Father Have to Sign the Birth Certificate to Have His Last Name?

While signing the birth certificate establishes paternity in most instances and states, it isn’t always necessary for the baby to have the father’s last name.

However, in some states, the father’s consent may be required. In Georgia, the father signing the birth certificate has no bearing on paternity.

Can You Put Any Last Name on a Birth Certificate?

In general, you can put any last name on the birth certificate as long as it doesn’t infringe on the rights of others and isn’t intended to commit fraud. However, it’s best to consult with a legal professional in your state to understand the specific laws applicable to you.

How Long Does a Father Have to Sign a Birth Certificate?

The time a father has to sign a birth certificate varies from state to state. In some states, it’s 60 days, while in others, it might be up to a year. It’s crucial to check with your local registrar’s office to understand the timeframe in your jurisdiction.

Final Thoughts

While your baby can indeed have your boyfriend’s last name – or you can chose for the baby to have your name, or even a combination of both last names – navigating the legal landscape can be challenging. Remember to consult with a legal professional to ensure you’re making informed decisions that are in the best interest of your child.

Comments 4

  1. The mother of my child has intentionally not let me see her . She has lied and told her family that her current BF is my child’s father. My daughter is over 1 yr old now. Will I be considered abandoning my child in the state of Georgia?

    1. Post

      Thank you for your comment, Caleb! That is a great question – and the answer depends on whether or not you are legitimated, and whether or not you are under a child support order. If you are legally obligated to provide for your child, then if you don’t provide for them or contact them for 1 year or more, then that is abandonment. However, it sounds like you may not be legitimated or even under a child support order (which can be two different things). If you want to legally be involved in your daughter’s life, which also includes right to visitation and the duty to support, you’ll need to ask the court to be legitimated. Feel free to give us a call 770-580-3699 to discuss more, or reach out to another father’s rights family law attorney in whatever county your daughter lives in – since that’s where you’ll have to file your court case. Hope this helps! -Kira

  2. Hej.
    Jag är interimistiskt ensamvårdnad och ska föda barn mars 2024,
    Han har samma pappa som min andra barnen.
    Frågan är att kan min nyfödd barn få samma efternamn som de andra barn ,andra barnen har samma efternamn som pappa, eller han kan få efternamn som jag automat?
    Jag var gift för andra barnen med pappa,men för den nyfödd har jag blivit ensamvårdnad.

    1. Post

      Hi Roya – thank you for your comment! I used Google translate to translate your comment from Swedish to English, so I apologize in advance if I don’t answer your question correctly. Disclaimer: I am only licensed to practice law in the state of Georgia, so if you are asking in terms of Georgia, then you can write your surname down on the vital records form to get your birth certificate for your baby to have your surname, not the father’s surname (if you are no longer married). HOWEVER, if you’re in another state in the US or in another country than the, you’ll definitely want to make sure you speak with an attorney that practices family law in the state/country/region where you are. That way, you can know for sure. Hope this helps! Wish you the best! -Kira

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