A woman's name change rights upon being widowed
If a woman wishes to revert to her maiden name upon being widowed she can do so without the need for a Deed Poll. This is because her husband's death certificate and her marriage certificate (which shows her maiden name) are usually accepted as documentary evidence that her name has changed. Government departments and most companies and organisations will change their records to show the new surname upon presentation of these certificates.
However, if the death certificates and marriage certificates are not accepted by everyone a Deed Poll will be required. This is guaranteed to be accepted by all organisations as documentary evidence of a change of name.
A Deed Poll must also be used if a widow wishes to be known by another surname, or wishes to change her forenames.