Changing a name on your Passport
The Identity and Passport Service is probably the most important record holder you will need to notify of your name change.
Since the name on your passport should always match your legal name, it is important that when you change your name you have your passport amended to incorporate your new one. This is necessary no matter how you have changed your name, be it by Deed Poll, upon marriage, separation, divorce, or following a civil partnership.
When you apply to change your name on your passport, your current one will be cancelled and you will be issued with a new standard ten year passport. Your new passport will be credited with up to nine months of extra time towards the unexpired time left on your previous passport.
- Changing your name on your passport following your change of name by Deed Poll
- Applying for a passport in a different name to that on your birth certificate
- How to apply to amend your passport
- Changing your name on your passport following a Marriage
- Changing your name on your passport following a Civil Partnership
- Changing the name in your passport following your Divorce
- Changing your name on your passport following your Separation
When applying for your new passport following your change of name by Deed Poll, your Deed Poll document will be accepted as documentary evidence of your change of name. A photocopy of your Deed Poll will not be sufficient - it is essential to enclose your original Deed Poll document or a legal copy.
If you are applying for your first passport, when sending of your passport application you will need to enclose a copy of your Deed Poll. This will provide documentary evidence to show that you have changed the name on your birth certificate to your current one.
You may be in such a position that your name was changed as a child but you have no documentary evidence of this change. What is important is that when you fill in your application form for your Deed Poll, you notify us of your birth name in the relevant box. This will ensure that the correct name change will be shown on your Deed Poll and therefore, that it will be accepted by the Passport Office.
You can apply to amend your passport in a number of ways. These are described below:
- Collect an application form from a high street partner of the Passport Office - selected Post Office branches and WorldChoice travel agents.
- Fill in the application form request online and the Passport Service will send you a form in the post.
- Make an online application. This allows you to fill in the form and send it online. You will then be posted the printout. You need to sign this and return it with your photographs and the necessary documents.
- Call the 24-hour Passport Adviceline on 0300 222 0000 and have the form posted to you.
How to complete it
The form comes with full instructions, whether you fill in the paper version or complete it online. You should follow these carefully as any errors will delay your application.
Signing your Form
Only you need to sign your form to apply for a new passport. Applications for post-dated passports for 16 or 17-year-olds that are to be married or enter into a civil partnership do not need to be supported by the written permission of a person with parental responsibility.
Please note: Your form should be signed at section 9 with your new name, even if you are waiting to get married.
Visas on your former passport
When you apply to amend your passport your current passport is cancelled and you are issued with a new one. This can mean that visas in your current passport become invalid. Please check with the issuing authorities whether an unexpired visa in a cancelled passport can still be used. If not, you will have to reapply for the visas in question.
It is common practise for a woman to change her name upon marriage. If a woman decides to take her husband's surname, the marriage certificate provides the necessary documentary evidence to the Passport Office that she has changed her name. It is only if a woman wishes to be known by another name, for example, a hyphenated (double barrelled) name, for example, one that incorporates both hers and her husbands surname, that she may need to execute a change of name by Deed Poll. This will ensure that there are no problems or delays in changing all her documents and records into her new name.
There is so much to think about when you get married that amending your passport can easily be forgotten. However, some countries may refuse you entry if your passport has not been amended, even if you carry your marriage certificate with you. You can check this with your travel agent or at the country's consulate, but it is usually best to change your passport in advance.
The Passport Office can arrange this for you any time up to three months before the ceremony, although you'll be unable to use your passport until the actual day of your marriage.
The 'Civil Partnership Act' came into force on 5 December 2005. The Act allows for adults of the same sex to enter into a legally binding civil partnership. Couples who form a civil partnership will have a new legal status, that of 'civil partner'. The Identity & Passport Service (IPS) will accept civil partnership certificates as documentary evidence of a change of name.
Under British nationality law, the Civil Partnership Act 2004 does not confer automatic nationality status to either of the partners. Only those who have the status of British citizen, British overseas territories citizen, British national (overseas), British overseas citizen, British subject or British protected person are eligible for a British passport.
The Passport Office requires proof of your name change in the form of your civil partnership certificate. There is so much to think about when you get enter a civil partnership that amending your passport can easily be forgotten. However, some countries may refuse you entry if your passport has not been amended, even if you carry your civil partnership certificate. You can check this with your travel agent or at the country's consulate, but it is usually best to change your passport in advance.
The Passport Office can arrange this for you any time up to three months before the ceremony, although you'll be unable to use your passport until the actual day of your civil partnership.
You may decide to revert to your name before marriage/civil partnership following a divorce/dissolution of your civil partnership. If this is the case, then when you apply for a passport in your former name you will need to enclose your original Deed Poll or decree absolute certificate/civil partnership dissolution certificate.
If you wish to change your name upon separation wil you need to apply for a Deed Poll in order to have the name on your passport altered. You can then apply for a new passport enclosing your Deed Poll as the documentary evidence of the change of name.
To change your name...
- Fill in our online application form
- Receive your Deed Poll in the post
- Sign and date your Deed Poll
- Update records into your new name
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