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: http://deptpub.nic.in/forms/Guidelines%20for%20change%20of%20name%20Adult%20%28Major%29_1.pdf

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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543 Comments

  1. Saurabh GautamSaurabh Gautam06-12-2017

    Hi Sir,

    I have a query :
    My mother is planning to change her first and last name. Her age is 63. She is government retired and getting pension.
    Is the procedure same for getting the name changed for govt. retired Employee ?
    Once the name changed is it possible to reflect the new name in Pension Order as well ?

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar06-12-2017

      Gazette notification in state gazette is mandatory for govt. employees. You may face some queries since your mother is changing her complete name at this age.

      • SaurabhSaurabh06-14-2017

        She is changing her first name and adopting her husband last name.
        Is there any age restriction while changing the name ?
        What kind of queries will be there if she is changing the first name and adopting her husband last name?
        Also Sir please clarify once the name is changed same will be get changed in Pension Order as well like other documents easily.

        • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar06-14-2017

          There is no age restriction but usually people get these things done much earlier. Yes name can be updated in Pension Order as well if all relevant documents are submitted.

  2. narayan gadenarayan gade06-09-2017

    i will follow your step and change my name as jagdish .
    .
    .
    after that i want to know sir what about my ssc certificates , diploma marksheets , identity documents on all of these having old name carry plz …. sir give mi suggestion please sir please

  3. narayan gadenarayan gade06-09-2017

    hii sir , my name is ” Narayan gade ” on the all my entire educational certificate , all id documemts (adhhar , pan ) and still i ‘m stdying engg.2nd year , but on farm i.e. 7/12 my name is ” jagdish gade “.
    .
    .
    i want to change my name from ” Narayan ” to the ” jagdish ” for this i will follow your step and change my name as jagdish .
    .
    .
    after that i want to know sir what about my ssc certificates , diploma marksheets , identity documents on all of these having old name carry plz …. sir give mi suggestion please sir please

  4. RaviRavi06-01-2017

    Sir, Need help

    From 10th to Post graduation result my father name have mistakes I also help Advocate he said me you want to changes every certificate one by one with University because Gazzet Certificate not allow you when you apply for Passport. Is that any solution ?

  5. jeyajeya05-31-2017

    hello sir…….
    In my 10 to BE certificate my name was printed as XXXXYYYY. But in my typewirtting certificate it is printed as XXXX YYYY with space inbetween the two.how do change that ?
    if I have selected by govt exam means(tnpsc), is there problem will be occur in certificate verification ? please help me sir..

  6. abhinavabhinav05-24-2017

    Hello, Mr. Padiyar
    I am a 20 yr old student. My name is + surname. all my documents have this name except my passport, which has only my name. I have to change my name to + surname for my passport.

    I have a few queries.

    where do the advocates sit?
    which advocate should can i trust?
    how much will they charge?
    how to know if the affidavit is not a fake one?
    what all documents are required to be taken to the advocate?
    Thank you.

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar05-24-2017

      Go to the city civil court, you can find many lawyers there. Carry your current ID and address proofs.

  7. DeepakDeepak05-17-2017

    Hi,
    Your blog has helped me earlier to do bescom connection transfer without bribe.
    I am again landed at your blog regarding name change for my wife.
    I have marriage certificate with my wife’s name as her maiden name only, till now we haven’t planned for name change (surname I mean).
    Now, we have decided to go for her surname change to my title.
    For that, what kind of affidavit we need to give in the first step? Any BDA complex, I can go to and get this done or some other place I need to go?

    Thanks
    Deepak

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar05-17-2017

      The steps I have provided are generic for everyone. Just follow the same. You can find notaries at BDA Complexes, and if you want to get the Affidavit notarised by a Magistrate then take the help of a lawyer at Mayo Hall.

  8. Ravi KapadiaRavi Kapadia03-21-2017

    Hello My self Ravi kapadia, i m from Baroda,
    Issue is that My surname is “kapadia” my father surname is “Parmar” Now i m facing problem for cast certificate they can not accept this things, can you please suggest i have download that form but how to send n all process. And how much fees required and normal post to send it.

    Please help

  9. Amit KumarAmit Kumar03-10-2017

    Hi Mr Vijay
    I added my name as surname to my wife’s name (who initially did not have any surname, just first name). This was done through oour marriage certificate, notorized addidavit and we got her possport and PAN card issued with changed name. So far, no problem. But I tried to change the name of parents (mother’s new name) for my children in school/CBSE, a teacher told me that I need court decree. They say CBSE only accepts court decree. I am really not clear. Can you please guide. Regards, Amit Kumar

  10. imranimran02-17-2017

    I am a Muslim. Could I change my name from Imran to Hindu name (say Kumar)?
    Is it possible?
    Is the procedure any different for this.?

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar02-18-2017

      Hi Imran, I am not a legal expert but certainly it would not be as straightforward in that case. You would likely be asked to submit a certificate to prove that you have changed your religion to Hinduism. I would suggest you consult a lawyer to know the exact steps for your case.

  11. shahbazshahbaz02-17-2017

    sir, i am 23 years old, i have completed my bechalor degree and now i want to change my name but someone is saying it will take more than 2 years as there will be a court case which will involve my state board from where i persued my early education,my university and lastly passport office. does it take this long? what court case is he referring to? i live in jammu and kashmir

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar02-17-2017

      Certain J&K laws are different from the rest of India due to Article 370 of the Indian Constitution, so I would request you to check with a lawyer from your state itself for the exact. But I don’t see any reason why changing your name would involve a court case. Procedure to change name in passport will be same for you, i.e. gazette notification will be required. As for university, you will need to follow up with them on the procedure.

  12. Sunita KumariSunita Kumari01-24-2017

    My son name Blossom Kumar, but suggestion of Numerome numerology after 10th examination. Rohan kumar has changed his name. Now I notice it published in Gazzette of Bihar. But there is no facility in online at the Bihar government Press.
    Please help me.

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar01-24-2017

      You may approach the state Gazette publication office in person too. It is not compulsory to apply online. Or alternatively you can apply for publication in Gazette of India.

  13. KAPIL R BACHHETAKAPIL R BACHHETA01-06-2017

    DEAR SIR MY REAL SURENAME IS( VACHHETA) AND MY SURENAME AS PER ALL DOCUMENT IS (BACHHETA).
    PLEASE SIR GIVE ME ANY SOLUTION FOR CHANGE MY SURENAME.
    I’M CURRENTLY STUDY IN MCOM SO THAT IS POSSIBLE TO CHANGE SURENAME IN 10TH AND 12TH STANDARD AND B.COM ALSO.
    PLEAS SIR GIVE ME ANSWER.

  14. RajanRajan12-28-2016

    Hi,
    I am from Jharkhand and currently i live in Mumbai. I have changed my name in Mumbai through Gadget with all legal formalities. Now my PAN card, Voter Id, Adhaar card is in the address of Mumbai and on New name.
    Now i want do my further Study in Jharkhand, so do i have to apply name correction in Jharkhand also?
    Or should i have to take admission with New name.

    Pls advise.

    Note:
    Old Name: Rajan Kumar
    New Name: Rajan Premdhari Mahto

    • Vijay PadiyarVijay Padiyar12-28-2016

      You have to take admission in new name, obviously. Your old name cannot be used anywhere now.

  15. Anil KumarAnil Kumar12-17-2016

    In what provision of law one can change his name?

  16. Ravi Ram chavvaRavi Ram chavva12-09-2016

    Sir, I am from telangana state ( bsc final year student ) ,sir iam changing my name in only in degree through gazette , sir is there any problem if i change my name in degree but not ssc , inter(11,12) pls replay sir

    • narayan gadenarayan gade06-16-2017

      hav u came u frnd ???? my problm is also same as u

  17. RevaReva11-08-2016

    Hello sir! I have to change my name in dob certificate and adhar card and 10th class certificate as my name is reva but evryone know me with rhynna so can i change my name in class 12th cbse board as i am a student of 11th class n one more thing can u please tell me that how many days it ll take to change . I m from delhi

  18. md irfanmd irfan10-12-2016

    hello sir .i am inter religion married women.my 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

  19. 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

  20. Sunita KumariSunita Kumari09-15-2016

    how entry new name of my son in Bihar Gazette

  21. BirinthaBirintha09-11-2016

    Sir..
    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.

  22. PrakashPrakash08-22-2016

    Thanks for the update, this really helps

  23. AnonymousAnonymous08-20-2016

    HI,

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

  24. 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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