Changing your name

When a woman marries a man she does not have to adopt her husband’s surname. In fact, she may continue using her own surname. However, if she chooses to adopt her husband’s surname, she can use her marriage certificate to substantiate the change. Which means that she will need to send her marriage certificate to HM Passport Office, the DVLA and all other companies, organisations and government departments so that they can change her surname on their records, and issue new documents where applicable. The same applies to a married man if he wants to adopt his wife’s surname, and to partners in a same sex marriage or civil partnership.

You do not need to change your name by deed poll if your situation is as above; however, if your marriage certificate becomes lost or damaged, it can cost up to £23.40 to obtain a replacement. So you may decide to change your name by deed poll in any case so that you can keep your marriage certificate safe and send out your deed poll document instead.

Exceptional Circumstances
You will need to change your name by deed poll in the following situations:

  1. You want a double-barreled surname i.e. ‘Jones-Smith’*
  2. You want to combine (sometimes known as ‘mesh’) your surname i.e. combine ‘Jones’ and ‘Smith’ to create ‘Jonith’
  3. You want to use your maiden name as a middle name
  4. You want to make other changes to your name

i.e. change the spelling of your first name
*some organisations will accept your marriage certificate in substantiation of a double-barreled surname.

Changing your Title

If you use your marriage certificate to substantiate your change of surname because your adopting your partner’s surname, then most originations will assume that you also want to use the title of Mrs, unless you inform them otherwise.

If you change your name by deed poll then your change of title will be stated on the same i.e. Miss Sarah Jones to Mrs Sarah Smith.

Note you can continue to use your current title i.e. you are not legally required to use the title of Mrs. This might apply to those currently using the gender neutral title of ‘Mx’.

Changing your Martial Status

Aside from your change of name and or title, you should also inform all applicable companies, organisations and government departments of your change in martial status. If you use your marriage certificate to substantiate your change of surname then it will clearly be apparent that your martial status has changed. But if you’re changing your name by deed poll, you should send a photocopy (not the original) of your marriage certificate alongside your deed poll to any applicable organisation.

Frequantly Asked Questions

Q. Can I use my maiden name at work for business purposes?
A. Yes, you can legally use your maiden name when working for an employer.

Q. What happens if I receive a cheque in my old name?
A. Most banks will allow you to cash a cheque made out to your previous name, so long as you can prove that you used to be known by that name.

The Next Steps

If you would like to change your name/title by deed poll then you will need to complete our online adult application form. Please click the ‘APPLY NOW’ button below.

Apply online today for only £18 inc VAT, price includes Web discount.

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We're one of the two main Deed Poll providers. Our efficient, guaranteed service is available throughout the UK and tens of thousands of people change their names with us each year.

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