Paternal abandonment as a cause for requesting a change of surname

Have you ever thought about changing your last name? Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to file a lawsuit and, according to the law, you may be able to win the lawsuit. Certainly, parental abandonment is a situation that affects many children around the world.

Because of this, upon reaching adulthood, such children may present emotional consequences, affecting their daily lives. However, to stop a % of cases, neglect has managed to become a legal implication.

Is it possible to request a change of surname due to an absent father?

Yes. Whether paternal or maternal, you can request a change of surname on the grounds of absent parent. However, be aware that removing a surname does not remove your biological parent.

What is required to file a claim?

First, a good lawyer who knows the law, as well as the background of the case. Currently, there are at least six reasons you can request a surname change when:

  • 1. Be ridiculous or laughable.
  • 2. The claimant has been recognized under a name other than the one indicated on his or her identification (for more than five years).
  • 3. There is no matrimonial filiation.
  • 4. The claimant wishes to reverse the order of the surnames.
  • 5. The surnames are not of Spanish origin (translate them into the language).

It is important to remember that one of the fundamental bases is evidence that the claimant has suffered abandonment.

What is parental abandonment and how does it affect the child?

Parental neglect can be defined as the reality in which a parent ceases to look after the interests of his or her child. In addition, apart from physical detachment, it may also be considered abandonment if the parent:

  • It does not provide financial support.
  • It is not part of the important decisions in the child’s life.
  • Rejects the existence of the child.

On the other hand, as to how it affects them; certainly, there are some cases where the father is absent from the moment of birth. In such cases, the psychological damage is usually minor, but even so, the abandonment as such would already be a trauma for the infant.

However, in the worst case scenario, when the child already knows you, the child may suffer trauma. For example, identity problems and rejection of their person.

How can paternal abandonment be a cause for requesting a change of surname?

The change of surname has been one of the cases that has reached the courts the most. However, in most of these cases, the change has only been accepted due to the circumstances mentioned above.

Even so, after the amendment of the Civil Registry Law, the change of surnames may be granted on exceptional grounds. For example, in the case of Supreme Court Ruling number 795/2022, dated November 21. The reasons that led the judge to make this decision included:

  • The constant pain and trauma of the abandoned child (now woman).
  • Abdication of the exercise of parental authority.
  • Non-compliance with parental commitments.
  • Total break in ties with the paternal family (he does not know them).
  • Serious psychological damage (identity conviction).

Therefore, any individual who meets the same circumstances may proceed to sue, before the Supreme Court, for a change of surname.

Supporting laws

Article 54 of the Civil Registry Law: Change of surname or identity by means of a dossier, lists certain circumstances that allow such a change.

However, following the update, Article 55: Authorization of change of surname or identity in exceptional circumstances indicates that:

“When reasons of urgency or security not contemplated in Article 54.5 or other exceptional circumstances so require, the change of surnames or the total change of identity may be authorized, by Order of the Ministry of Justice, under the terms established by regulation.” For example, one or more traumas caused by parental abandonment.

If you are thinking about changing your last name or know someone who wishes to do so, you already know the legal basis for doing so. Although it is a big step on a personal level, it is advisable to seek advice and seek a lawyer who knows how to guide the case to achieve the requested change of surname.

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