Historically, people refrained from changing names and even when they did, it was more of an announcement in the press or declaration in front of some authoritative bodies. There was some development in the 18th and 19th centuries when Acts of Parliament and royal licenses made name change more official. The system received an improvement in the 20th century by deeds poll.
In modern times in the UK, the deed poll has become a legal contract concerning only one individual with easy access to instructions and organisations that can update records, such as driver’s license, relating to the person. One can easily apply for a Deed Poll without parental supervision once you’re 16 years of age.
Read below to find it how the name change process has become hassle-free now, more than ever before.
One can easily find the website of the UK Deed Poll Office, and on landing on the home page, can see “Apply Now” flash at the top banner. When you click there, you get directed to the application form, which you need to fill out. This directs you to the secure payment gateway, where you can make the payment with your credit or debit card for the Deed Poll facility and click on the “Order Deed Poll” button. You’ll receive the confirmation email on the same day on ordering a deed poll before 3 PM on weekdays. If you’ve ordered it later, you get the confirmation email within two working days.
The arrival of the Deed Poll via post
If you ordered your Deed Poll before 3 PM on a working day, the chances are that you’d receive the documents within two working days, provided your delivery address is in the UK.
When you receive the UK deed poll via post, you’ll find the deed poll document with other duplicate copies and a guidebook to help you through the process of the change and update of your name. The guidebook will help you with signing and collecting witnesses for your Deed Poll. The envelope in which your Deed Poll arrives also contains a draft covering letter with a list of institutions and organisations to help you request an update of the new name in their records.
Enrollment and notification about the name change
Once you receive your Deed Poll documents via post, you should first read the document called “How to Execute Your Deed Poll” that gives you instructions about the name change process. By reading this, you will get to know precise information about signing, gathering your witnesses, etc. Refer to the document called “List of Bodies to Notify” to decide on the bodies or organisations you want to inform of the name change. Use the document entitled “Draft Covering Letter” when you choose to write to some relevant institutions and organisations informing them about the name change. You should also request that they revert with the updated documents related to the process, like passport, driving license.
You can’t apply for a Deed Poll without parental supervision in the UK until you are 16 years old. There are also some restrictions to choosing your new name. You should prevent applying for a new name that can cause public offence or violates any intellectual property rights.
The UK Deed Poll also does not allow the use of mononyms, like Drake. This is because some official government offices can restrict accepting some official documents with your name change.
You should refrain from using copyrighted names like Victoria or Chanel to sell products by those names. This may cause an infringement of intellectual property rights and restrict your use of certain documents, like the passport.