FAMILY CODE SECTION 298-298.7
298. (a) (1) The Secretary of State shall prepare forms entitled
“Declaration of Domestic Partnership” and “Notice of Termination of
Domestic Partnership” to meet the requirements of this division.
These forms shall require the signature and seal of an acknowledgment
by a notary public to be binding and valid.
(2) When funding allows, the Secretary of State shall include on
the form notice that a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender
specific domestic abuse brochure is available upon request.
(b) (1) The Secretary of State shall distribute these forms to
each county clerk. These forms shall be available to the public at
the office of the Secretary of State and each county clerk.
(2) The Secretary of State shall, by regulation, establish fees
for the actual costs of processing each of these forms, and the cost
for preparing and sending the mailings and notices required pursuant
to Section 299.3, and shall charge these fees to persons filing the
(3) There is hereby established a fee of twenty-three dollars
($23) to be charged in addition to the existing fees established by
regulation to persons filing domestic partner registrations pursuant
to Section 297 for development and support of a lesbian, gay,
bisexual, and transgender curriculum for training workshops on
domestic violence, conducted pursuant to Section 13823.15 of the
Penal Code, and for the support of a grant program to promote healthy
nonviolent relationships in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and
transgender community. This paragraph shall not apply to persons of
opposite sexes filing a domestic partnership registration and who
meet the qualifications described in subparagraph (B) of paragraph
(5) of subdivision (b) of Section 297.
(4) The fee established by paragraph (3) shall be deposited in the
Equality in Prevention and Services for Domestic Abuse Fund, which
is hereby established. The fund shall be administered by the Office
of Emergency Services, and expenditures from the fund shall be used
to support the purposes of paragraph (3).
(c) The Declaration of Domestic Partnership shall require each
person who wants to become a domestic partner to (1) state that he or
she meets the requirements of Section 297 at the time the form is
signed, (2) provide a mailing address, (3) state that he or she
consents to the jurisdiction of the Superior Courts of California for
the purpose of a proceeding to obtain a judgment of dissolution or
nullity of the domestic partnership or for legal separation of
partners in the domestic partnership, or for any other proceeding
related to the partners’ rights and obligations, even if one or both
partners ceases to be a resident of, or to maintain a domicile in,
this state, (4) sign the form with a declaration that representations
made therein are true, correct, and contain no material omissions of
fact to the best knowledge and belief of the applicant, and (5) have
a notary public acknowledge his or her signature. Both partners’
signatures shall be affixed to one Declaration of Domestic
Partnership form, which form shall then be transmitted to the
Secretary of State according to the instructions provided on the
form. Filing an intentionally and materially false Declaration of
Domestic Partnership shall be punishable as a misdemeanor.
(d) The Declaration of Domestic Partnership form shall contain an
optional section for either party or both parties to indicate a
change in name pursuant to Section 298.6. The optional section shall
require a party indicating a change in name to provide his or her
date of birth.
298.5. (a) Two persons desiring to become domestic partners may
complete and file a Declaration of Domestic Partnership with the
Secretary of State.
(b) The Secretary of State shall register the Declaration of
Domestic Partnership in a registry for those partnerships, and shall
return a copy of the registered form and a Certificate of Registered
Domestic Partnership and, except for those opposite sex domestic
partners who meet the qualifications described in subparagraph (B) of
paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 297, a copy of the
brochure that is made available to county clerks and the Secretary of
State by the State Department of Public Health pursuant to Section
358 and distributed to individuals receiving a confidential marriage
license pursuant to Section 503, to the domestic partners at the
mailing address provided by the domestic partners.
(c) No person who has filed a Declaration of Domestic Partnership
may file a new Declaration of Domestic Partnership or enter a civil
marriage with someone other than their registered domestic partner
unless the most recent domestic partnership has been terminated or a
final judgment of dissolution or nullity of the most recent domestic
partnership has been entered. This prohibition does not apply if the
previous domestic partnership ended because one of the partners died.
(d) When funding allows, the Secretary of State shall print and
make available upon request, pursuant to Section 358, a lesbian, gay,
bisexual, and transgender specific domestic abuse brochure developed
by the State Department of Public Health and made available to the
Secretary of State to domestic partners who qualify pursuant to
(e) The Certificate of Registered Domestic Partnership shall
include the name used by each party before registration of the
domestic partnership and the new name, if any, selected by each party
upon registration of the domestic partnership.
298.6. (a) Parties to a registered domestic partnership shall not
be required to have the same name. Neither party shall be required to
change his or her name. A person’s name shall not change upon
registration as a domestic partner unless that person elects to
change his or her name pursuant to subdivision (b).
(b) (1) One party or both parties to a registered domestic
partnership may elect to change the middle or last names by which
that party wishes to be known after registration of the domestic
partnership by entering the new name in the space provided on the
Declaration of Domestic Partnership form without intent to defraud.
(2) A person may adopt any of the following middle or last names
pursuant to paragraph (1):
(A) The current last name of the other domestic partner.
(B) The last name of either domestic partner given at birth.
(C) A name combining into a single last name all or a segment of
the current last name or the last name of either domestic partner
given at birth.
(D) A hyphenated combination of last names.
(3) (A) An election by a person to change his or her name pursuant
to paragraph (1) shall serve as a record of the name change. A
certified copy of the Certificate of Registered Domestic Partnership
containing the new name, or retaining the former name, shall
constitute proof that the use of the new name or retention of the
former name is lawful.
(B) A certified copy of a Certificate of Registered Domestic
Partnership shall be accepted as identification establishing a true,
full name for purposes of Section 12800.7 of the Vehicle Code.
(C) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit the
Department of Motor Vehicles from accepting as identification other
documents establishing a true, full name for purposes of Section
12800.7 of the Vehicle Code. Those documents may include, without
limitation, a certified copy of a document that is substantially
equivalent to a Certificate of Registered Domestic Partnership that
records either of the following:
(i) A legal union of two persons that was validly formed in
another jurisdiction and is recognized as a valid domestic
partnership in this state pursuant to Section 299.2.
(ii) A legal union of domestic partners as defined by a local
jurisdiction pursuant to Section 299.6.
(D) This section shall be applied in a manner consistent with the
requirements of Sections 1653.5 and 12801 of the Vehicle Code.
(4) The adoption of a new name, or the choice not to adopt a new
name, by means of a Declaration of Domestic Partnership pursuant to
paragraph (1) shall not abrogate the right of either party to adopt a
different name through usage at a future date, or to petition the
superior court for a change of name pursuant to Title 8 (commencing
with Section 1275) of Part 3 of the Code of Civil Procedure.
(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to abrogate the
common law right of any person to change his or her name, or the
right of any person to petition the superior court for a change of
name pursuant to Title 8 (commencing with Section 1275) of Part 3 of
the Code of Civil Procedure.
298.7. The Secretary of State shall establish a process by which
two persons, who have been living together as domestic partners and
who meet the requirements of paragraphs (1) to (5), inclusive, of
subdivision (b) of Section 297, may enter into a confidential
domestic partnership. This process shall do all of the following:
(a) Maintain each confidential Declaration of Domestic Partnership
as a permanent record that is not open to public inspection except
upon order of the court issued upon a showing of good cause.
(b) Authorize the Secretary of State to charge a reasonable fee to
offset costs directly connected with maintaining confidentiality of
a Declaration of Domestic Partnership.