A: You can file the appropriate legal documents with the court in the county where you reside. The court may require that you publish certain notice of the proceeding in a newspaper in circulation where you reside. This is done to put the public and any creditor you may have on notice of your intent to change your name.
You will have to notify several state departments including the Attorney General or County Prosecutor of your Application for a Name Change. You will have to also notify the Director of the Division of Criminal Justice in Trenton.
The process can be quite difficult and expensive. The court filing fee is $250 and the court has a pro se packet for name change petitions. Here is the link for the packet: https://www.njcourts.gov/forms/10551_namechg_adult.pdf
You may also hire an attorney to help you obtain a name change. My firm, as well as many others, can help.
A: Please be advised that I am not an attorney in North Carolina so I am unable to give you legal advice.
If your mother died in New Jersey I would tell you to contact the surrogate’s court in the county where your mom died and ask for assistance. Some surrogate courts have a website as well. The surrogate court in New Jersey is where you apply for letters testamentary. Though to do this, your mother must have a will. If she died without a will, in New Jersey you would apply for letters of administration.
You should contact a lawyer in North Carolina if you need assistance with this.
A: Additional facts may be needed to provide a thorough answer. The short answer is no. If you sought legal advice from your friend and he provided it, a confidential attorney-client relationship is formed even if you never hired your friend to represent you. All communication with him that falls within the attorney-client privilege is confidential and cannot be disclosed by your attorney/friend, with a few exceptions. As the "client" in this scenario, you are the holder of the privilege.