Contrary to popular belief you can use any name you wish other than your name given at birth whenever you’d like if you decided to change your name at any given point, you’re perfectly entitled to do so.
However when it comes to official business: Claiming benefit, getting a job or proving your identity you should refer to the name given at birth, or the name written on your passport/driving license.
Legally you can change any part of your name, first, middle and last. So if you’re not feeling your last name, there’s nothing legally stopping you from going ahead and changing it.
So – how do you do change it?
A deed poll is a document that proves a change of name. You can apply for one in two ways and use it, you can change your name on your passport and or driving licence.
To change your name on your passport or driving licence you can make your own deed poll and must be over 16.
A deed poll of this nature is simply a piece of paper stating:
“I [old name] of [your address] have given up my name [old name] and have adopted for all purposes the name [new name].
“Signed as a deed on [date] as [old name] and [new name] in the presence of [witness 1 name] of [witness 1 address], and [witness 2 name] of [witness 2 address].
“[your new signature], [your old signature]
“[witness 1 signature], [witness 2 signature]”
You can also get this kind of deed poll created by a solicitor.
However, some organisations will not accept that kind of deed poll, but will only accept an enrolled deed poll. Organisations like banks usually demand this.
To enrol your deed poll, you must be 18 or over and you’ll have to pay a fee of £36. To enrol the deed poll you’ll need to send it to the royal courts of justice.
The Gazette – An official public record will then put out a notice once the name has been changed.