Change of Name Deeds
If you would like to change the name on your passport or driving licence, you may wish to arrange for a change of name deed. A change of name deed, also known as a 'deed poll' is a legal document signed in front of two witnesses. It expresses that:-
• You have abandoned your previous name and have a new one.
• You will use the new name at all times and;
• You will ask everyone to address them by your new name only.
If you are divorcing your spouse or civil partner and wish to revert to a maiden name – or if you simply fancy a new name - a change of name deed may be a more desirable method. Financial institutions broadly accept a decree absolute and marriage certificate, but some financial institutions only accept a change of name deed. However, you do not need to wait for the decree absolute, you can arrange for a change of name deed so you can be known by your new name at any stage of the divorce proceedings.
If you wish to change the name of your child, the procedure is similar. But there are certain legal restrictions on deed polls for children to comply with. You would need the consent of the other parent (or if not provided an order from the court) to be able to arrange one. If you would like to arrange a change of name deed for your child, it is advisable to consult a solicitor first.
At Garden House Solicitors we have experience in preparing change of name deeds for adults and children. We also have experience in assisting clients apply to the Royal Courts of Justice for an enrolled Deed Poll. An enrolled Deed Poll is as effective as a change of name deed, save that it puts the new name on the public record. This could be useful for genealogists of the future who are tracing your descendant’s family tree.