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Deed Poll Helpline

A comprehensive guide to changing

your name by Deed Poll in the UK

About Deed Polls

Changing Your Name

Reasons for a Name Change


Reasons for a Change of Name


Time Saving Tip: The quickest and easiest way to change your name in the UK is to

Apply For Your Deed Poll Online.


For some a change of name can symbolise a fresh start after a marriage or a family break up, while for others it is simply a long overdue change from a name they have never been happy with.

By Deed Poll a person can change their forenames, surname or may simply want to alter the spelling of a current name. It is also possible for parents to change a child's name by Deed Poll.

Whatever the reasons for the name change, some form of documentary evidence will be needed, be it a Deed Poll or a marriage certificate. Without the necessary documentation official records such as passports cannot be changed to show a person’s new name.

The following are some of the most popular reasons that people decide to change their names.



When a couple decide to change their name upon marriage the marriage certificate can be used as proof of the change of name. A woman can send of her marriage certificate to departments and have her surname changed to that of her husbands. However other forms of name change are becoming increasingly popular upon marriage. For example, double-barrelling a couples surnames, a wife using her maiden name as a middle name, and even ‘meshing’ surnames to form a new one. Usually any other form of name change will require a Deed Poll to be used.

Therefore, newly weds often choose to use a Deed Poll to change their name upon marriage as it allows further flexibility in exactly what they can change their name to.


Divorce and Separation

When a couple separate or divorce from one another they often choose to change their name. Usually this consists of women reverting to their maiden names although couples who have double-barrelled also often wish to change their surname.  

Upon divorce the decree absolute can be used to have records amended to show the new name. This should be sent of to all organisations holding records which need to be updated.

If a woman has separated from her husband, or is proceeding with a divorce but has not yet received her decree absolute, she can use a Deed Poll to change her name. Once executed, a Deed Poll can be used in the same way as a decree absolute to provide evidence of the name change.

When families break up some mothers choose to change their children’s surnames from that of their father.


Dislike for a Current Name

Every year, more and more people choose to change their name simply because they are unhappy with the one they were given at birth. A person can change their forenames, surnames or they may want to rearrange their current names. 

Some people believe that a change of name can influence their career prospects and that choosing the right name can influence their success especially if they plan to be ‘in the spotlight’. Many famous people have changed their names in the past but it is difficult to determine whether this has contributed to their success. Transsexual people often choose to change their name to reflect their new gender.

In order to carry out any of these a person can apply for a Deed Poll. This will provide the necessary evidence to all departments for them to update their records to show the new name, including those held with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, and the Identity and Passport Service.


Time Saving Tip: The quickest and easiest way to change your name in the UK is to

Apply For Your Deed Poll Online.



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