351 A.2d 1059 (Pa. Super. Ct. 1988)
PROCEDURAL HISTORY: Appellant mother sought review of an order of the Circuit Court of Baltimore City (Maryland), which granted appellee father's petition for injunctive relief and enjoined the mother, who had custody of the parties' minor child and who had remarried after the parties divorced, from allowing and encouraging the child to be known by the surname of the child's stepfather.
-After the mother allegedly requested school teachers and others to address the parties' minor child by using the surname of the child's new stepfather, the father filed a petition for injunctive relief seeking to enjoin the mother from allowing and encouraging the child to be called by the stepfather's surname.
-The trial court granted the father's petition.
-On appeal, the court affirmed and held that (1) Maryland generally followed the common law rule that an adult or a minor child was entitled to adopt any name for a nonfraudulent purpose; (2) a person was entitled to change their name under the common law rule or through a judicial proceeding pursuant to Md. Ann. Code art. 16, § 123, which did not preempt the common law; and (3) a court was required to examine what was in the child's best interests before determining if a requested name change was warranted.
-Although there was no evidence of a fraudulent purpose in the mother's attempt to change the child's name, the trial court properly exercised its discretion in issuing the injunction because it was in the child's best interests to retain the father's surname.
CONCLUSION: The court affirmed the trial court's order that granted the father's petition for injunctive relief and enjoined the mother, who had custody of the parties' minor child and who had remarried after the parties divorced, from allowing and encouraging the child to be known by the surname of the child's stepfather.
Interested in learning how to get the top grades in your law school classes? Want to learn how to study smarter than your competition? Interested in transferring to a high ranked school?