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Kelly Clarkson explains decision behind her requested name change

The superstar filed a petition to change her name last month.
/ Source: TODAY

Kelly Clarkson is still Kelly Clarkson.

Clarkson, whose middle name is Brianne, filed a petition last month to legally change her name to Kelly Brianne. She says that should have no bearing on what people call her, though.

“I just got divorced, so I had to drop my married last name,” the singer told “People (the TV Show!)” on Monday at the Los Angeles premiere of her new show, “American Song Contest.” “I just kept my middle name for my personal life. I’m still Kelly Clarkson.”

The “Since U Been Gone” singer then noted it would be pretty tough to drop the name with which she is so identified.

The Kelly Clarkson Show - Season 3
Clarkson elected to change her name following her divorce from Brandon Blackstock.Weiss Eubanks / NBC

“I don’t think I can change Clarkson at this point. I’m 20 years in!” she joked.

In court documents filed last month, Clarkson explained why she was seeking a new moniker.

“My new name more fully reflects who I am,” she said.

Clarkson’s petition comes after she filed for divorce in 2020 from Brandon Blackstock, with whom she has two children, River, 7, and Remington, 5.

Earlier this month, Clarkson and Blackstock settled their divorce. According to court documents obtained by TODAY, Clarkson will pay Blackstock a one-time payment of $1,326,161, in addition to monthly payments of $115,000 in spousal support until Jan. 31, 2024, and $45,601 monthly in child support for their kids. They will maintain joint legal custody of the children.

Clarkson has not been shy about discussing her split from Blackstock.

“I mean, it’s no secret,” she told Sunday TODAY’s Willie Geist in September 2020. “My life has been a little bit of a dumpster ... personally, it’s been a little hard the last couple months.

“I’ve been talking to friends that have been through divorce. I don’t know how people go through that without having some kind of outlet because it is the worst thing ever for everyone involved.”