How to Change Your Name After Divorce in the U.K? – Answered

It is often possible for legally divorced women to revert to their maiden name with the production of her Decree Absolute Certificate and Original Marriage Certificate.

A Decree Absolute Certificate (DAC) is the final legal document that dissolves a marriage. It should be kept as evidence by both parties and provided where required.

A large number of divorced women have written to various companies and notified they are reverting back to their birth name (listed on their Birth Certificate) which is acceptable to selected companies.

Many larger Organisations such as government agencies will change and update details without any problems on the production of a DAC and Marriage Certificate. Unfortunately, banks and building societies will not and require proof of a Deed Poll.

Deed Poll is a document that provides proof that an individual has changed their name. It is acceptable to all relevant bodies as proof of a name change. The name on your Passport should always match your legal name. A Deed Poll is a form of Legal contract but only relates to one person (differing from the traditional contracts that require two). It is legally accepted by all organisations, companies and bodies within the UK and British Embassies across the world.

There are now literally hundreds of websites and organisations offering to supply Deed Poll documentation (www.Deedpoll.org.uk is the most popular). In the age of convenience changing a name can take a few clicks of a button. In reality, the actual process takes up to two weeks to complete all paperwork. Deed Polls can be issued by Solicitors and organisations.

In order to attain this documentation, you may be asked to prove that you do not intend to commit a crime such as fraud by changing your name. On a similar thread, if you have been declared bankrupt it is essential that your previous name is made known. Deed Polls can be created at home on the condition they are acceptable to relevant agencies. When documentation is received it requires to be signed by a witness such as:

  • A Friend
  • Work Colleague
  • Respected Member of the community

Who do I need to notify of a name change?

As with a change of address, there are a number of important bodies you legally must contact when you change your name or fines and penalties could be enforced. These include (but are not exclusive):

  • Passport – this is the only item that will result in charge
  • Driving Licence
  • Bank Accounts (including Credit Cards)
  • Medical Records
  • Council Tax
  • Employer

If you are currently in the process of getting divorced, it is advisable to ask your solicitor to produce documentation for you about the separation to provide to third parties.

If children’s names are being changed during this process then they must also apply via Deed Poll unless circumstances dictate differently. The signage on this document should be completed by parents or guardians.

Legal Requirements to Change Surname to Husband’s Name in the UK

Many brides decide to change their name when they get married. The good news, if you decide to change your name to that of your husband is that there is no requirement for a Deed Poll (legal document for name changes across the UK). All that is required is to provide your marriage certificate accompanied with a covering letter explaining the desire to use your husband’s name.

If you need assistance on drafting an appropriate covering letter simply perform a search on the internet and numerous free templates can be found.

The provision of the marriage certificate is acceptable to all government agencies and organisations (including the Passport Office). It is worth noting that selected authorities will require to be sent the actual Marriage Certificate (for example the DVLA). It is a good idea to attain a number of Marriage Certificates. This can be done via the Marriage Registration Team relevant to your council area if your ceremony was performed by a Registrar. There is usually a charge for additional copies but it provides peace of mind that the original version will not go missing.

Who do I need to notify of a name change?

As with a change of address, there are a number of important bodies you legally must contact when you change your name. These include:

  • Passport – this is the only item that will result in charge
  • Driving Licence
  • Bank Accounts (including Credit Cards)
  • Medical Records
  • Council Tax
  • Employer
  • Mortgage Provider
  • Utility Provider

The list is almost inexhaustible so it is recommended to create a personal check list in order to inform all parties.

The only issue that can arise to confuse the above process is if the decision is made to use a double barrelled surname. This would require the use of a Deed Poll.

Deed Poll is a document that provides proof that an individual has changed their name. It is acceptable to all relevant bodies as proof of a name change. The name on your Passport should always match your legal name. A Deed Poll is a form of Legal contract but only relates to one person (differing from the traditional contracts that require two). It is legally accepted by all organisations, companies and bodies within the UK and British Embassies across the world.

There are now literally hundreds of websites and organisations offering to supply Deed Poll documentation (www.Deedpoll.org.uk is the most popular).

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