Who can change their name?
You can legally change your name if you are 16 years of age or older unless there are any court orders or other restrictions in place preventing you from doing so.
Can I change my child’s name?
Yes, if all those who have parental responsibility for the child consent to the name change.
If you have sole parental responsibility, you do not need anyone else’s consent to change your child’s name.
If both parents have parental responsibility, but permission cannot be obtained from one of them, i.e. because they refuse to consent, or because their whereabouts are unknown, then a specific court order need to be obtained.
How long will it take to obtain the change of name document?
We provide a same day service for all adult change of name documents.
However, once we provide you with the documents, you will need to take it to a different solicitor’s firm to have it certified by them in your presence.
Once this has been completed the change of name is effective immediately and is a recognised legal document.
You will likely need numerous copies of the signed change of name document so that you can provide this to various organisations such as your bank, DVLA and the Passport Office.
What is the difference between a statutory declaration and a deed poll?
Both processes have the same legal standing.
A statutory declaration can be prepared on the day and will then need a second signature from another firm of solicitors. Once completed, the statutory declaration is recognised as a legal document.
For a deed poll, it is a more complex process in which various forms need to be completed and an application is made to the court for enrolment of the name. This process is slow and more costly than a statutory declaration.
Do I have to update my driving licence in my new name?
Yes — by law, you have to keep your driving licence up to date, and you must tell the DVLA about any change in your name or address.
Failure to do so could leave you with a £1,000 fine.
Do I have to update my passport in my new name?
No — there is no legal requirement to renew your passport if you change your name. Your passport will remain a valid document, and you can still travel with it.
Can I change the name on my birth certificate?
If your birth was registered in England or Wales, there are some limited circumstances when your birth certificate can be changed.
A birth certificate is generally considered a matter of fact — it was correct at the time it was issued and it cannot normally be changed.