Matter of Kobra

KINGS COUNTY
Family Law

New York Law Journal

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Judge Harriet Thompson

A mother sought leave to change the names of her children with the consent of the children's father. The eldest daughter's name was previously changed to assume her father's surname, and that petition was granted. However, the initial reason the mother gave for the current name changes was that she did not like the name, then contended that neighborhood children laughed at her children and their names. The court noted applicant presented three completely different explanations for leave to change her children's names, and it found none of the proffered explanations genuine. It ruled the initial name change for one daughter was reasonable, but the current name changes for two girls—where they neither resemble each other nor either parents' surnames—was a deviation from customary practice. The court concluded the applications for name changes did not promote the best interests of the children and the petition to request a first and surname change for the children was denied with prejudice.

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