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VIC Divorced, Remarried and Divorced Again - Can Ex Use Previous Surname?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Msdelight, 4 September 2014.

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  1. Msdelight

    Msdelight Member

    3 September 2014
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    My ex-sister-in-law divorced my brother in 1989 and remarried and took the new husband's name on. Now she is divorced again and wants to use my brothers surname again. Can she call her self Mrs [H] again which is my brother's sir name please? If so, how? This has me confused. They are not in a relationship together or married again and have no children.

    My brother has a new partner has had for over 22 years. How can my ex-sister-in-law be allowed to call her self Mrs [H] again when she is divorced from my brother for over 25 years? How can she be allowed to call her self my brother's wife again even though they are divorced? She is obsessed by him and has hopes of getting back with him which will never happen My brother is happy with his present partner and they have children together. So he is not planning on leaving her for his ex-Mrs any time soon. He has told me this.

    Thanks for your time.

  2. Sophea

    Sophea Well-Known Member

    16 April 2014
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    Anyone in Australia can legally change their name to whatever they want. I could change my to Mickey Mouse if that's how I wished to be known. When someone has been married, there is absolutely no requirement that they revert back to using their maiden name, and in fact many people don't because it is so complicated and annoying. There are no 'rights' in a name and there is nothing you can do to force your ex sister in law to change her name. Try not to lose sleep overit.
  3. Tim W

    Tim W Lawyer

    28 April 2014
    Likes Received:
    If she took her then-husband's surname, then she is free to keep it.
    Only to the extent that she is not (either by act or omission) receiving benefit (such as, but not only, financial benefit) from seeming to be married to him when she is not.
    Subject to a few ifs and buts and common sense prohibitions, a person can call her/himself
    (pretty much) whatever name they choose.
    So, she can pretty much use whatever surname she wants.
    As a matter of law, she was not obliged to take on his surname upon marriage,
    and was not obliged to change it (either "back", or to any other name) upon divorce.
    Claiming to be his wife, is not the same thing as simply having the same surname.
    Claiming to be his wife is a claim about legal marital status which may not be true.

    The key question here is - is she telling people (or allowing them to mistakenly think) that she is his wife?
    Or is she just going around calling herself "Mrs Bloggs" as a matter of personal style?
    Sophea likes this.

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