How to change your name

“Change of Name” refers to changing one’s first name, last name or both.

A person would want to change his/her name for various reasons. However, these reasons could be bonafide and malafide.

  1. When change of name is considered to be “Bonafide”:
  2. 1. For ease in pronunciation;
  3. 2. Post marriage by either spouse;
  4. 3. Religious purposes;
  5. 4. Political purposes;
  6. 5. Business purposes;
  7. 6. Change in gender;
  8. 7. Mere disliking of current name/surname;
  9. 8. Divorce;
  10. 9. Adoption (in case of children);
  11. 10. Identity makeover/ change in identity.
  12. When change of name is considered to be “Malafide”:
  13. 1. If a person has committed a fraud and wants to escape from the criminal liability arising out of his fraudulent act/s.
  • Correct means of doing it: Change of Name should be done by following a proper legal procedure. If not so done, difficulties and issues could arise in future in issuing your new government issued ID cards and thereby changing your name at all places required, such as, banks, offices, insurance policies and more.

Steps Involved:

  • Download and fill the Application form with the required documents, available on the official website of Maharashtra Gazette for change of name (link given at the end of this article);
  • Prepare an affidavit for name change in the format so prescribed;
  • Give an advertisement of the same in a local newspaper.

Who can do it?

The individual who wishes to change his name can do it on his own OR he may appoint an advocate to help with the procedure.

 Documents for the process

For Major / Adults –

  • Mandatory :
  • 1. ID Proof : Pan card or Passport or Driving Licence or Aadhar Card or Voters Id;
  • 2. Address proof : Ration Card or Aadhar Card or Electricity Bill;
  • 3. Photo : One Passport Size Photo;
  • 4. Application Form : Duly Signed Application Form with all details Old & New Name, Correspondence address, Contact Details & reason for Name change.

Optional :

  1. Marriage certificate ( if Any for Female after Marriage);
  2. Affidavit (if made for any reasons such as adoption, etc.);
  3. Divorce papers.

For Minors / below 18 years of age:

  • ID Proof: Aadhar card or School ID or Aadhar Card
  • Address Proof: Ration card or Aadhar Card
  • Age Proof: Birth Certificate or Bonafide
  • Photo: One Passport Size Photo
  • Application Form : Duly Signed By Minor if possible and parents or Guardians

Procedure for Name Change in Gazette:

  • Need to Make a Login Id: Click on this link:
  • Log in with username & Password or make a new account.
  • Fill in All the correct Mandatory details like Old name & new Name / Reason for Name Change / date of Birth , Mobile No & Email Id / Address Etc.
  • Attach All the Documents ( ID proof / Address Proof / Photo & Application Form ) & Continue.
  • Select The payment options ( Net Banking / Credit card / Debit card etc)

With Gazette notification, the name change is officially completed.

(We have provided the above link for the State of Maharashtra. Link to the state government website of other states shall apply depending on your place of residence per your address on your passport/aadhar/any official photo ID.)

Now you can apply for name change in all other official documents by providing copies of

Affidavit, newspaper ads and Gazette Notification as proof of name change.

It may take a month to change your name legally in India. But the time required to change your name on official documents takes longer.

  • Duration : It takes minimum 15 working days and maximum 30 working days for the gazette to approve your name change.
  • Important steps post name change : After obtaining the new name, it is mandatory to update the same in one’s Aadhar Card, Passport, PAN Card, Bank records and all such documents that reveal the identity of a person.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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