How to Change Your Name Legally in India

NOTE: I am NOT a legal expert. This is just my personal experience of getting my name changed legally. Since the rules and/or procedures may have changed since when I changed my name, you are advised to refer to other sources as well. For any queries, it is recommended to approach a lawyer well-versed in these matters.

Having changed my first name legally a couple of years back, I would like to share with you the procedure to do the same. Change of name can be for reasons of personal preference, marriage, change of religion, etc. Either way, the procedure and rules remain the same. The only condition is that you must be over 18 years of age to change your own name. For minors, parents can do it on your behalf.

1. The first step is to get submit an Affidavit of Name Change in your respective District Court (e.g. Mayo Hall in Bangalore) before a Magistrate or Notary Public. The Affidavit must mention the current name and the desired new name, and may mention in brief the reason for name change. The Affidavit must be made on a Non-Judicial Stamp Paper of minimal value (say Rs. 10 or Rs. 20). An advocate can help you prepare the Affidavit in a legally appropriate format.

You may be required to attest proof of Indian citizenship with the Affidavit. Once the Affidavit is signed by the Magistrate or Notary, it comes into force immediately.

2. The next step is to publish advertisements announcing your name change in two local newspapers – one in the local official language and another in English. This is required as per law, so that if anyone has objections to your name change, they may have an opportunity to take it up with the authorities. Of course, in vast majority of cases there are no objections at all.

Name change newspaper ad

3. The third step is to publish an advertisement of your name change in the official Gazette of your respective state (also called a Gazette Notification). For this purpose, you must approach the Government Press of your respective state and fill up the form for the same, giving details such as old and new name, address, etc. Then you must pay the prescribed fees. Your name change notification will be published in the state’s Official Gazette and you will be sent copies of the same at the address given by you.

NOTE: In case your state does not allow printing of name change in its Official Gazette, you can get your name change notification published in the Gazette of India. To do so, follow the procedure outlined here:

With the publication of name change in the official Gazette of state/central government, the procedure of name change is officially complete.

4. The next step is to apply for name change in all other official documents such as Passport, PAN Card, Driving License, Ration Card, etc. The above documents (copies of Affidavit, newspaper ads and Gazette Notification) should suffice as proof of name change.

NOTE: For married women applying for name change due to marriage, a copy of Marriage Certificate is enough for changing name in all Government documents. If Marriage Certificate is not available, a Joint Affidavit by husband and wife with a joint photograph declaring their marriage should be adequate.

5. Lastly, you must apply for name change in bank accounts. For this, you can submit Affidavit and Gazette Notification as proof of name change, and new Passport, PAN card, DL, etc. as proof of ID.

6. As for changing name in educational certificates, you can try if you have a lot of patience and free time. This is because getting educational certificates re-issued in new name will require lot of correspondence and paperwork with various institutions, depending on how many degrees you have! Additionally, it is not strictly necessary to have educational certificates in the new name once you start working and have professional work experience.

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  1. md irfanmd irfan10-12-2016

    hello sir .i am inter religion married name is from hindu .and my husband is muslim.i take cast change and marraige certificate from wakf board of andhrapradesh. finally i want to change my name in muslim like aadhar card and voter id etc.with my marraige and cast certificate can i change name in aadhar card.please help me in detail procedure

  2. Poornima jumberhallimathPoornima jumberhallimath09-29-2016

    Hello sir
    Currently i am in usa..when i went to apply for SSN,they asked for marriage certificate which is kept in bank locker. Instead of all hassles of power of attorney, i am getting another from my hometown. My question is i have changed my surname. Its pxxxxxxxx .h. r in marriage certificate. And its pxxxxxxx jxxxxxxxxxxh in passport. so do i need the affidavit to support the change to get SSN or marriage certificate is enough.?
    Can i get my surname changed in marriage certificate directly? Whats the rule for surname change while applying for SSN? Please reply soon as its very urgent

  3. Sunita KumariSunita Kumari09-15-2016

    how entry new name of my son in Bihar Gazette

  4. BirinthaBirintha09-11-2016

    I change my name spelling legally.. I already put advertisement, also got gazette.. I change my name in Id proof also like voter,pan,license,passport..
    But my prblm is Marksheet of sslc,hsc,ug,pg.. I apply for an gvt competitive exam what name I can use?? They instruct name as per in sslc certificate.. plz clear it.. if I attend exam they need id proof.. their I have name name( spelling changed)

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar09-12-2016

      You can apply in you school and college for new marksheets with new name by giving gazette copy. Alternatively you can present old certificates along with affidavit and gazette copy for government exam.

  5. PrakashPrakash08-22-2016

    Thanks for the update, this really helps

  6. AnonymousAnonymous08-20-2016


    Can i change my name in any state as at present i am in mumbai and my permanent address is in Uttar Pradesh.

  7. harshharsh08-13-2016

    Hello sir i am from bihar and i want to change my name 10th to bsc certificate board can re-issue certificate or not please help me

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