Using of Ex-Husband’s Surname in Turkish Law
Marriage and divorce both have a strong influence on a woman’s surname. Since the surname of the male spouse is accepted as a family name, the surname of the woman changes with the marriage. The legislator granted the divorced wife the right for using of ex-husband’s surname. However, this right is not absolute but limited. The fact that the divorced spouse can continue to use the surname of his ex-husband depends on the existence of certain conditions. Upon the fulfillment of these conditions, the divorced woman can continue to use the surname of her ex-husband in line with the judge’s decision.
THE EFFECT OF TERMINATION OF MARRIAGE ON A WOMAN’S SURNAME
Marriage can end for a variety of reasons. In case of dissolution of marriage, as a rule, the family name is preserved. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. There are exceptions in cases where the marriage ends with the death of the husband and when it ends with the divorce of the spouses. These termination reasons will have different effects on the personal situation of the woman. To put it briefly;
1. If the marriage ended with the death of the male spouse;
If the marriage has ended with death, that is, if the husband of the woman has passed away, the woman continues to use the surname of the deceased spouse. Unless the woman remarries, she continues to bear the surname of the former spouse. However, it is also possible to take the surname of celibacy if requested.
2. If the marriage has ended with divorce;
Divorce is one of the institutions that ends marriage. With the divorce, the woman takes her previous surname again. With the finalization of the divorce decision, it automatically results. However, if the legislator considers that the woman has an interest in carrying the surname of her divorced husband and that this situation will not harm the ex-husband, he may allow the ex-wife to use and carry the surname, upon the request of the woman. This will be discussed in more detail below.
As a rule, the divorced woman takes her previous surname again, although she preserves her personal status with marriage. However, there is an exception to this. If the woman has an interest in using of ex-husband’s surname and this situation will not harm the ex-husband, the judge allows the woman to use her ex-husband’s surname. A court decision is needed for the woman to continue to use the surname of the ex-spouse. If the conditions change, the ex-spouse can ask the judge to remove this permission. In practice, it is often seen that it is against the interests of the woman to take her previous surname after divorce. For example, the woman may have gained an important place in her career with this surname. In such cases, it is accepted that the woman has a legal interest in carrying her ex-husband’s surname.
The woman may file a lawsuit to use the surname of the divorced spouse and express her desire to use the surname of the former spouse. In this regard, the burden of proof lies with the plaintiff, namely the wife. It must prove that the necessary criteria for the acceptance of the case are met. These criteria are;
- The woman has a legitimate interest in using the surname of the ex-spouse
- The fact that the woman’s use of the ex-spouse’s surname will not harm the ex-husband.
If the divorced woman is married for the first time, she automatically returns to her celibacy surname. However, in the presence of legal conditions, she can request the judge to continue using her ex-husband’s surname. However, if the divorced woman is widowed, she takes the widow’s surname after the divorce, and it is also possible to take the bachelor’s surname with the decision of the judge.
SITUATIONS WHERE THE WOMAN IS ACCEPTED TO USE THE EX-SPIRIT’S SURNAME
- The fact that the woman has a place in business and career life with this name-surname
- The woman’s fame with this surname
- The fact that the child and mother bear different surnames does not serve the best interests of the child.
- Writing the surname of the ex-spouse on the woman’s diploma, theses, documents and certificates
- The woman whose previous surname was widow’s surname does not want to take this surname again
- The woman’s work in public and the presence of her surname in official affairs
HOW TO OPEN THE CASE OF USING THE SURNAME OF THE EX-HUSBAND?
The woman’s request to use the surname of her ex-spouse can be put forward either in the divorce case or after the divorce by subjecting it to a separate case. The permission to carry the surname of the ex-spouse depends on the existence of certain litigation conditions. These;
- The divorced woman should have a request.
This request can be brought forward either within the divorce case or as a separate case after the divorce.
- The case should be directed to the ex-spouse.
As a rule, the opponent of this case is the ex-spouse. However, in the event of the ex-spouse’s death, the case may also be directed to the ex-spouse’s heirs.
- The burden of proof must be fulfilled by the divorced spouse.
It must be proved by the plaintiff wife that the woman has an interest in using the surname of the former spouse and that this situation will not harm the former spouse. Upon completion of these matters, the judge decides that the divorced spouse should bear the surname of his ex-husband.
- The lawsuit must be filed within 1 year of the finalization of the divorce decision.
This period is the statute of limitations. It must be observed by the plaintiff. Otherwise, the defendant will benefit from the statute of limitations objection plea.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE USING OF EX-HUSBAND’S SURNAME
- Will the ex-husband’s permission to use her surname change the course of the case?
It is not possible for the ex-husband to allow or refuse the divorced woman to use her surname. However, if the divorced woman’s use of this surname causes harm to the husband, the husband’s disapproval can be based on a legal basis.
- What is the competent court and competent court in the case of using the surname of the ex-spouse?
The Family Courts of the plaintiff’s place of residence are in charge and authorized to deal with this case.
- What happens if 1 year has passed while filing a lawsuit?
A one-year statute of limitations is stipulated for using the surname of the ex-spouse. Since this period is not a period of deprivation, you can file your case even after 1 year has passed. However, the defendant, the former spouse, may state this situation to the judge as a statute of limitations. The judge does not take this matter into consideration on his own, but may observe that the 1-year period has passed at the request of the defendant.
- Can the ex-husband prevent the use of her surname later on?
Yes, this matter has been adjudicated. If the case of using the surname of the former spouse is won by the divorced woman, but the conditions have changed over time, the former spouse may apply to the judge and request the cancellation of this permission.
For more detailed information on using of ex-husband’s surname, you can contact us on our contact page.
EXAMPLE DECISIONS ON THE CASE OF USING OF EX-HUSBAND’S SURNAME
- “… In the concrete case, the attorney of the plaintiff; his client… He stated that he got divorced with the decision of the 9th Family Court with the decision numbered 2009/196, Article 2009/196, that he continued to use his wife’s surname after the divorce, since the children were young, and that his client has no interest in using his former wife’s surname. to be corrected as “Tellioğlu”…” (Legal Office 2019/3257 E. , 2019/4853 K.)
- “The husband may request the removal of this permission if his conditions change. From the collected evidence; It is understood that the defendant woman was allowed to bear the surname of her divorced husband pursuant to the consensual divorce decision finalized on …, and that no situation could be proved within the meaning of the relevant article of the Turkish Civil Code, which would require the abolition of this permission. While the lawsuit for the removal of permission for the plaintiff husband to bear the defendant woman’s surname should be rejected, its acceptance was not found correct. (Y 2.HD, T.14.11.2013, E.2013/6259 K.2013/26355.)
- “The request is for permission to use the surname of her divorced husband (TMK. m.173/2). The fact that this request is put forward during the divorce case or after the divorce decision does not change the nature of the case and the competent court. According to Article 4 of Law No. 4787, the competent court is the Family Court. It is against the procedure and the law to make a decision of non-jurisdiction when the merits of the matter should be examined. (Y 2.HD, T.10.09.2007, M.2007/14097, K.2007/11911.)