Deed Poll for England

CHANGE OF NAME DEED



Instructions for Your Deed Poll



A deed poll, also known as a deed of change of name, is the simplest and most straightforward way of changing a name in the United Kingdom. The other means of changing a name is known as a statutory declaration; this route is less popular because the procedure is more onerous and requires a solicitor. A deed poll is a straightforward way of officially declaring a name change that is accepted by all institutions, both public and private, in the UK.

Who Can Change Their Name

In the United Kingdom, there is very little regulation on who is able to change their name by deed poll. Anyone changing their name must have mental capacity. When changing a child's name, consent must be acquired from all people with parental responsibility, or a court order must be obtained. A parent can only complete a deed poll for minor children aged 15 years or younger. Once a minor has reached the age of 16, they are able to complete a deed poll in their own right, not requiring parental consent.

The deed poll specifies whether the person changing their name is a British Citizen, British Dependant Territories Citizen, Commonwealth Citizen or a citizen of another country. For the first three types of citizens, the process should be simple and straightforward, and in most cases a British deed poll will suffice in their respective territories. In relation to citizens of other countries, the person wishing to change their name should enquire with their country's authorities if the deed poll procedure will suffice. For nationals of other countries, the deed poll will suffice to change documentation in the United Kingdom; however, problems may occur if identification documents cannot be changed as the deed poll contains provisions that require the former name not to be used anymore.

Restrictions on New Name

There are few restrictions placed on what one may change their name to; however, good sense and judgement should always be used. A name should never use symbols and should always be pronounceable. The new name should not potentially be in violation of any law; for example, by promoting racial hatred.

As stated above, you should give thought to and be practical about choosing a new name. Even though technically a name may be legal, this does not mean it will be accepted by every organisation. For example, HM Passport Office will not accept names that appear to denote a title that is not held, such as "Lord" or "Lady". Also, the length of a new name should be considered. For example, the DVLA will only accept names that are 30 characters or fewer.

Executing Your Deed Poll

The deed poll is a fairly easy document to execute. When completing the document, pay careful attention to ensure that both the former name and new name are entered correctly and completely. This should include all first names, middle names and surnames.

After the document is prepared, it needs to be signed and witnessed. The creator of the document should sign the document in front of two witnesses at the same time. In the allocated spaces, the creator will need to sign both the new and former name. Once this is complete, the witnesses will need to complete their allocated sections. It is advisable to print and sign several copies of the document with the witnesses, as the creator may need several original documents.

Notification

It is the duty of the creator to notify all relevant authorities and organisations of his or her change of name. If the creator is an undischarged bankrupt or subject to a debt relief order, he or she must notify the official receiver. Also, those with pending criminal proceedings must notify the police of their subsequent name change.

ONCE THIS DOCUMENT HAS BEEN EXECUTED, THE CREATOR MUST CEASE USING HIS OR HER OLD NAME IN ANY CAPACITY WHATSOEVER.

Individual Personal Affairs

Deed Poll

A deed poll, also known as a deed of name change, is a legal document that allows people to alter and change their name in the easiest and most straightforward way.

Widely accepted by public and private institutions within the United Kingdom, a deed poll allows all the convenience of changing your name without the countless procedures required by other methods of name change. Whether changing a surname after divorce or getting rid of a disliked first name, a deed poll is the solution.

LegalNature's step-by-step guidance will help you to create, download and print your deed poll in minutes.

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user guide icon Help Guide

So often, people live with names they either do not want to be associated with any more due to a marital or partnership break down, or simply because they do not like the name they were given at birth. As long as the motive for changing a name is not because it is intending to defraud a person or an organisation, anyone is welcome to go through this quite painless process. Changing a name by deed poll is one of a number of ways that a name can be changed. The other popular method is through the use of a statutory declaration. This article deals exclusively with changing a name through deed poll, which is considered to be the easiest way to change a name. Before you start changing your name by deed poll, you should check to make sure you are eligible to do so first.

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