How to Change Names By Deed Poll
You may be told you need a deed poll to change names. Be wary of where you get your advice from because many companies that sell deed polls may lead you to believe this is your only choice!
How to change names
When changing your name for reasons other than adding or removing your spouse's surname, you have a number of options:
1) Name change by association. Notify family, friends and colleagues of your new name and start using it immediately. Your name change will have taken effect by reputation in the community and you can use your new name without taking any formal steps. Organisations such as the passports office and banks will not issue official documentation under your new name as it becomes difficult to prove account ownership if people can change names this easily. You retain your birth name on most legal documents but will be known by your new name in the community. (cont...)
2) Deed Poll. Necessary if you want your ID and accounts updated in your new name. There is no central register for deed polls, so take your time and chose a reputable company. Check if they can provide duplicates when required. Consider getting a spare copy and storing it safely in a second location. This process is best if you want the name changed on your passport, driver's license and bank accounts.
3) A letter from a solicitor or reasonable person. This is one of the lesser known methods to changing names. You can follow the same procedure outlined in option 1 and just start using a new name. Where you are asked for evidence of your new name you can produce a letter from a reasonable person, such as a policeman, headmaster or doctor. It is at the discretion of each organisation who holds your records and accounts if they decide to change your name over. In time you may have many accounts under your preferred name, but if you want all your records changed as qucikly as possible a deed poll is the better option. In many cases it may not bother you what name your accounts are in, as your friends and family will know you by your preferred name.
Who can apply for a Deed Poll?
Any UK citizen aged 16 years and over can apply for a name change via deed poll. It is illegal to change your name if you are doing so to defraud or deceive anyone. There are special circumstances for those who are bankrupt, have a criminal record and for foreign nationals. If you fall into one of these groups we advise you ask the issuer of your deed poll for further information.
Where do I get a Deed Poll?
You can approach any solicitor who can draft a deed poll which should be universally accepted by all UK organisations. Online deed poll companies tend to be more cost effective than a traditional solicitor. They offer cost effective deed polls as they have streamlined the legal process in house and sell the same product to the masses online. Just Google 'UK deed poll' to see who is offering what. Expect to pay between £30-£50.
How do I update my records?
There are two parts to changing names. First, you need a document as proof of your entitlement to be known by a new name; your deed poll. Next, it's your responsibility to get all your accounts, memberships and records updated. Companies have a range of name change procedures; you may need to visit a branch, call in, return a form, or send a letter or fax. We provide all the necessary procedures for over 600 UK organisations. We'll also provide any necesary paperwork, and it only takes 10 minutes.
Considering Changing Names?
- Driver license
- Voter registration
- HMRC and more!
- Banks & credit cards
- Health, home, car insurances
- Loyalty programs
- Utilities and more!