Deed Poll Name Change: A Guide to Legally Changing Your Name

Changing one’s name is a significant decision, whether it’s due to marriage, divorce, personal preference, or any other reason. In legal terms, this process often involves what is known as a “Deed Poll.” A Deed Poll is a legal document used to officially change a person’s name. This article serves as a comprehensive guide to understanding the process of a Deed Poll name change.

What is a Deed Poll?

A Deed Poll is a legal document that allows an individual to officially change their name. It is a binding contract that is signed and witnessed, affirming that the individual has abandoned the use of their former name and will only use their new name from that point forward. The Deed Poll document is recognized by government institutions, banks, and other organizations as evidence of a name change.

Reasons for a Deed Poll Name Change

There are various reasons why someone might choose to change their name through a Deed Poll:

Marriage: One of the most common reasons for a name change is marriage. Traditionally, individuals may choose to take on their spouse’s surname after marriage.

Divorce: In the event of divorce, some individuals may wish to revert to their maiden name or adopt a completely new name.

Personal Preference: Some people simply prefer a different name for personal or cultural reasons and opt for a name change to align with their identity.

Correcting Errors: If there are errors in the spelling or legal documentation of a name, a Deed Poll can be used to rectify these mistakes.

The Process of Obtaining a Deed Poll Name Change

Research: Before proceeding with a name change, it’s essential to research the legal requirements and implications. Understand the process and ensure it aligns with your needs.

Prepare the Document: The Deed Poll document can be drafted by a solicitor, or individuals can use online templates provided by reputable sources. The document should include your current name, the new name you wish to adopt, and a statement declaring your intention to use the new name exclusively.

Witnessing: The Deed Poll must be signed and witnessed by independent adults who are not related to you. The witnesses must also sign and print their names on the document.

Notification: Once the Deed Poll is signed, it’s essential to notify relevant authorities and institutions of your name change. This includes government agencies, banks, employers, utility companies, and any other organizations you are affiliated with.

Use Your New Name: After completing the Deed Poll process and notifying relevant parties, you can begin using your new name officially.

Legal Recognition and Effectiveness

A Deed Poll is legally recognized in the United Kingdom and Change of Name Deed many other countries. It is considered valid evidence of a name change by government agencies, banks, employers, and other organizations. However, it’s important to note that while a Deed Poll provides legal recognition of a name change, it does not change a person’s identity in the eyes of the law.


Changing your name through a Deed Poll is a straightforward process that provides legal recognition of your new identity. Whether you’re changing your name due to marriage, divorce, or personal preference, a Deed Poll offers a formal and legally binding way to make the change. By understanding the process and following the necessary steps, you can successfully navigate a Deed Poll name change and embrace your new identity with confidence.