HOUSE DEMOCRATS NEWS RELEASE
Santa Fe, NM- Today, the New Mexico Senate passed House Bill 31, which removes a requirement that a notice of legal name changes be published in a newspaper, by a vote of 35-5. House Bill 31 now heads to the desk of Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham.
The bill would help protect the privacy and personal safety of individuals seeking to change their names. It would also allow an individual of fourteen years or older to petition the district court for a name change. Additionally, it would prohibit courts from requiring notice to one or more legal parents of an applicant who is under fourteen, if the court finds that such notice will jeopardize the applicant’s personal safety.
“Publication requirements for people who need to change their names are not only outdated, they also pose a serious safety threat, ” said sponsor Representative Christine Chandler (D-Los Alamos). “Removing this unnecessary burden will protect the personal safety and privacy of trans and non-binary New Mexicans, as well as survivors of stalking and domestic violence.”
The Roundhouse is open to the public for the 2023 session. Members of the public can also view floor sessions and committee meetings on the New Mexico Legislature’s Webcasts tab, and provide comment via phone or Zoom as directed on the daily schedule.