How do I change my name?

Abbie Kingdon  05-11-2020

To speak to a legal expert about changing your name today, call 01271 343457. 

Changing your name, whether it be your first, middle, surname, or your entire name, can be done by way of a Change of Name Deed or other official document.

People change their names for a variety of reasons, such changing their surname back to their maiden name after divorce, to double barrel their name after marriage, to fit in with a new family such as a step family or simply because they have been known by another name for a period of time.

A change of name can be done at any time of your life provided it is not being done for fraudulent purposes, but if you want it recognised on official documents such as your passport, driving licence, bank accounts, and medical records, you will need to complete a Change of Name deed or other official document for it to be recognised by these official organisations.

Can I change my child's name?

In the UK, in order to change a child's name, the starting point is that everyone with parental responsibility must consent to the name change.

Since 1 December 2003, under English law, an unmarried father automatically acquires parental responsibility if he is named on a child's birth certificate.

It is also possible to change a child's name by Order of the Court, where for example an absent parent's whereabouts is unknown, but evidence would need to be provided to the Court of attempts made to contact the absent parent, together with details of how long the absent parent has had no contact, as well as details of how they are no longer a part of the child's life.

In determining whether or not to grant an Order, the Court always has regard to the welfare of the child as its paramount consideration, and will also take account of the following factors:

  • whether there has been regular or irregular contact between absent parent and child;
  • any financial contributions made by the absent parent towards the maintenance of the child;
  • the child's age and their own opinion about the proposed name change; and
  • any other details concerning general lack of involvement in the child's life.

How We Can Help

If you would like to change your name, we at Samuels Solicitors can help. We provide a fast, fixed fee service and will start working for you immediately that you instruct us.

If you would like a free discussion about how to change your name, or how to change your child's name, and the fees involved for this work, contact us today. 

name change solicitor fixed fee devon