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Passports - How do I change my name on my Passport?

Changing your name on your passport is accomplished by filling in the HM Passport Office application form, gathering together all the necessary documents and sending it all, with the appropriate fee to HM Passport Office.  The information booklet that comes with the HM Passport Office application form, gives further details of the documents required.  In some cases, it is not necessary to have a change of name deed; which documents you need to send will depend upon why you are changing your name.  For instance, if it is because you are getting or have been married, you may just need your marriage certificate.  Set out below are some of the different scenarios that may apply to you.

  1. If you are a UK national and you are living in the UK, and you are changing your name because of your marriage:

1.1.    If you are taking your partner’s surname and giving up your own, if you have your UK marriage certificate, you can apply to HM Passport Office using your marriage certificate.  If you have lost your original UK marriage certificate, you can apply to the General Register Office for a replacement marriage certificate.  Or you can change your name by Deed Poll, and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If your marriage was not in the UK and your certificate is not in English, you will have to have it officially translated by an accredited translator, or you can change your name by Deed Poll and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If you are a national of another country, you will also have to follow the procedure for changing your name in that other country.

1.2.    If you are taking your partner’s surname, but still want to use your surname professionally, if you have your UK marriage certificate, you can apply to HM Passport Office using your marriage certificate.  In your application to change your passport you should state that you are continuing to use your maiden name professionally only.  Your new passport will be issued in your new name and there will be an observation that you will also continue to be known by your previous (stated) name.  If you have lost your original UK marriage certificate, you can apply to the General Register Office for a replacement marriage certificate.  Or you can change your name by Deed Poll, and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If your marriage was not in the UK and your certificate is not in English, you will have to have it officially translated by an accredited translator, or you can change your name by Deed Poll and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If you are a national of another country, you will also have to follow the procedure for changing your name in that other country.

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1.3.    If you are taking your partner’s surname and keeping your own surname as a middle name, if you have your UK marriage certificate, you can apply to HM Passport Office using your marriage certificate.  This is less common than simply changing your name to your partner’s surname, so we advise changing your name in your passport first, in order to facilitate changing your name on your other records, such as with banks.  However, if you do not want to update your passport immediately (it costs £72.50 currently) then you can update your other records most easily by applying for a Deed Poll.  If you have lost your original UK marriage certificate, you can apply to the General Register Office for a replacement marriage certificate.  Or you can change your name by Deed Poll, and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If your marriage was not in the UK and your certificate is not in English, you will have to have it officially translated by an accredited translator, or you can change your name by Deed Poll and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.

1.4.    If you are using your own surname double-barrelled with your partner’s name, you will need to apply for a Deed Poll.  You will need to send it to HM Passport Office with the application form, your marriage certificate and other supporting documents.  If you have lost your original UK marriage certificate, you can apply to the General Register Office for a replacement marriage certificate.

1.5.    If you are using your own and your partner’s surnames to make a new name, it is not possible to just use  only your marriage certificate to apply for a new passport and update your other records.  You will need to apply for a Deed Poll.

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1.6.    If you are making some other change to your name, it is not possible to just use your marriage certificate to apply for a new passport and update your other records.  You will need to apply for a Deed Poll.

  1. If you are a UK national and you are living in the UK and you are changing your name because of divorce

2.1.    If you want to go back to your maiden name, you can change your name on your passport by applying to HM Passport Office and sending your decree absolute, original birth marriage certificates to them.  You must also send a signed statement that you have reverted to your maiden name for all purposes.  If you have lost your original UK birth or marriage certificates, you can apply to the General Register Office for a replacement certificate.  Or you can change your name by Deed Poll, and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If your marriage was not in the UK and your certificate is not in English, you will have to have it officially translated by an accredited translator, or you can change your name by Deed Poll and use the Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  If you are a national of another country, you will also have to follow the procedure for changing your name in that other country.

  1. If you are a UK national and you are living abroad, you should consider carefully how best to change the name on your passport, as your passport, travel bookings and tickets must always be in the same name.  If they are not, you may be denied entry into another country or refused passage by an airline or other transport provider.  If you want to update your passport whilst visiting the UK, you will need to have an address in the UK for long enough for the passport to reach you there.  Alternatively, you could use the premium one-day service at HM Passport Office and apply in person and make an appointment in advance for a specific day and time.  If you are not visiting the UK, you can apply for a new passport through the Foreign Office, British Embassy or High Commission.  Any such bodies will accept a Deed Poll, but generally advise that it must be witnessed by a solicitor or notary public, which will increase your costs.  You will also have to provide other documentary evidence and should check first with the relevant office which documents you will need.
  2. If you are not a British citizen and you are living in the UK or abroad, to update your records in your country of origin, you will have to follow the procedure for changing your name in your country of origin.  If you are living in the UK, you can use a Deed Poll to update your records in the UK, such as your driving licence and tax records.  If you have to travel to your country of origin in order to change your name on your passport, you should wait until you return to your country of origin before changing your name.  This is because your passport, travel bookings and tickets must always be in the same name.  If they are not, you may be denied entry into another country or refused passage by an airline or other transport provider.

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Although it is not necessary to renew your passport to reflect your change of name, if you are not planning to travel immediately, some organisations or financial institutions require sight of your updated passport and/or other documentary evidence of your use of your new name, before they will amend their own records.

If you have already updated your name on your passport, the DVLA may check directly with HM Passport Office.  The change of name on your passport would be sufficient evidence for the DVLA to change their records and, in fact, a changed passport will be seen by many organisations as such.  It is often an advantage to change your name in your passport before updating your other records.

 

To review the most current version of this information, please visit Changing Your Passport Name. Click here to return to the Information Repository main page.

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