How to Change Your Name After Marriage | Legal Name Change

How to Change Your Surname After Marriage by Deed Poll

If you are getting married, you may not need a Deed Poll to change your name, you may just need your marriage certificate.  Set out below are some of the different scenarios that may apply to you.

If you are a UK national, you are living in the UK and you are getting married in the UK

If you are not planning to travel immediately after your wedding, it is not necessary to immediately renew your passport to reflect your change of name.  However, some organisations or financial institutions may 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 do want to update your passport soon after your wedding, the necessary documents that you will have to send to HM Passport Office with your application form will depend upon how you intend to change your name, and these are set out below.  However, if you are traveling abroad soon after your wedding, you must ensure that all of your travel arrangements, tickets, bookings and passport are in the same name, otherwise you may be refused passage by your airline or other transport provider, or refused entry into another country.  We would recommend that you update your passport and other records in the UK after you return from your honeymoon.

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.

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.

If you are taking your partner’s surname and keeping your own surname as a middle name, your marriage certificate alone will not be sufficient for you to apply for a new passport and update your other records.  You will need to apply for a Deed Poll and send it to HM Passport Office with the application form and other supporting documents.

If you are using your own surname double-barrelled with your partner’s name, you will need to apply for a Deed Poll to change the name on your passport.  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.

If you are using your own and your partner’s surnames to make a new name, it is not possible to 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.

If you are making some other change to your name, it is not possible to 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.

If you are a UK national and you are living abroad

You should first 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.  Please see above to find out if the new surname that you have chosen means that you should apply for a Deed Poll.

If you are getting married in the UK and subsequently returning to your country of residence, you may consider updating your passport whilst you are in the UK.  However, you will need to be in the UK and have an appropriate 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 getting married in the UK and 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.

If you are not a British citizen and you are living in the UK

To update your records in your country of origin and obtain a passport in your new married name, you will have to follow the procedure for changing your name in your country of origin.

If you are living in the UK and getting married in the UK, you can use a Deed Poll to update your records in the UK, such as your driving licence and tax records.  However, we recommend that you check with your Embassy or High Commission in the UK, what the procedure for updating your passport would be; for instance, can the Embassy or High Commission change the name on your passport, or do you have to send it to the passport office in your country of origin, or do you have to personally attend the passport office in your country of origin?  You should also ask if your country of origin will accept your change of name by Deed Poll, if they will issue a new passport and if they have any special requirements for your Deed Poll to be recognised.  For instance, they may require your Deed Poll to be witnessed by a solicitor, or “legalised”.  For more information, please see the FAQs entitled “Certified/Duplicate Copies – When does a Deed Poll have to be legalised?” and “Certified/Duplicate Copies – What is a certified copy and when might I need one?”

Whatever the requirements in your country of origin are, you should always ensure that your passport, travel bookings and tickets are all in the same name before you travel, or you may be denied entry into a country, or refused passage on an aircraft.  Also, if your travel between countries involves use of a visa, some visas may automatically expire when a passport is renewed.  You should bear this in mind when updating your passport, if, for instance, your return to the UK depends upon the inclusion of a valid visa.

How to apply

Apply now using our fast, simple and secure online application form and make payment with Paypal or Credit Card.
Once we have received your order we will print your Deed Poll and have it sent out on the same day via Royal Mail 1st class completely free of charge within UK.
Once you have received your Deed Poll kit, you should get it signed and witnessed in accordance with our guidance notes supplied to you with the order kit.