How to change your name and/or gender markers in Indiana

At MCCOY, we understand starting the legal process to change the name and gender on your identification can be overwhelming. That’s why we have assembled a walk-through of what the process looks like and what options and supports are available to Hoosiers. See below for details on what you can expect on this journey, and don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you have questions.

Step #1 – Fill Out Forms:

Download and fill out the request form packets, provided on the Indiana Legal Services website.

Your paperwork will include:

  • A form to request a waiver of the $157.00 fee.
  • A form that allows your name/gender change to appear in public record, in accordance with practice.
  • A alternative form that requests your name/gender change remain private due to safety concerns.

Step #2 – Bring the Completed Forms to a Courthouse

Bring your completed set of forms to your County Clerk’s Office, which you can find using the Indiana Court Directory.

You will be asked to pay the  $157.00 legal fee at this time, or to submit your waiver request form. The fee can be paid by cash, card, or money order. 

You will be notified by the clerk of your hearing date and location. Notification may happen immediately, or later by mail or email. 

Step #3 – Prepare For and Appear At Court

The clerk should have stamped a Notice of Petition for Change of Name when your case was filed. If you chose not to make your case private, you must place an ad of this in the newspaper. This ad must be in the newspaper for 3 weeks and no less than 30 days before your hearing. Your clerk should tell you which newspaper this ad must be placed in. Once your ad is published, you will receive a proof of publication from the newspaper. Bring this in along with your documents. 

You will be expected to bring any applicable identification documents to your hearing: Photo ID, Birth Certificate, U.S Passport, and Proof of Previous Names (i.e if your name changed due to marriage, divorce, adoption, etc.). If you live in Marion County, you will receive an order for documents. You should email a copy of each of the documents you will be bringing to the court itself no later than 5 days before your hearing. 

On the day of your hearing, try to arrive at court at least 15 minutes early.

At the conclusion of your hearing, your Judge will either approve or deny your requested change. If approved you will receive an official copy of your Order. You may receive this soon after, or you may have to come back a different day to pick it up.

Once you have your Order, you should take it back to your clerk’s office and get it certified. To get an order certified it can cost up to $2.00 per page. It is recommended that you get 3-5 copies. 

Step #4 – Update your Documents

To update your Social Security Card’s name and/or gender marker, you must fill out Form SS-5. Copies of this form can be found with the previous forms, the Social Security Administration, or at the Social Security Office. Once completed you should submit it, along with your State ID or driver’s license, Certified Name Change Order, and Proof of Gender (if applicable) to change . 

If you are doing this by mail, you should include all of these documents along with a cover letter, which can be found in your paperwork packet. 

The Application for Search and Certified Copy of Birth Record is for updating your birth certificate to reflect your name and/or gender change. This application has a fee of $10.00 and an additional fee of $4.00 per requested copy. You should bring this to the health department of the county where you were born, or send it in by mail. If you bring it in, you should come with your State Photo ID, a Certified Copy of your Name and Change Order, Proof of Gender (if applicable), and a check written for $10.00 and an additional $4.00 for each copy you would like of this record. 

If you are doing this by mail, you should include all of these items along with a cover letter, which is included in your packet. 

To update your State Photo ID, you should bring your current Photo ID, Name Change Order, and Proof of Gender (if applicable) to the BMV.

To update your passport, you must fill out Form DS-11. You must bring this to your closest passport processing office along with your photo ID and a copy of it, Proof of Citizenship, Proof of Gender (if applicable), a passport sized photo that reflects your current appearance, and two sums: one of $140.00 payable to the U.S Dept. of State, and one of $35.00 payable to the acceptance facility.

To update your Voter’s Registration you must use the name on your government issued ID. Update your Voter’s Registration online.

Step #5 – Update Everything Else

Once you have all of your important documents updated, you should update everything else. This includes your insurance, your leasing agreements, your bills, and any other specific-to-you records that have your old name listed. 

Congratulations! You did it! There are no more steps!

We know this process can be very tedious, but we want to make it as easy as possible by giving you all the information that we can. If you have others questions or concerns about the process, contact Fletcher Elliot at