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Changing your name

Changing your name

If you are using, or wish to use, a name other than your registered name, there is no legal requirement that you formally change your name. It is, however, recommended that you change your name officially, both for identification and as evidence of your name change.

It may be an offence to use another name in order to avoid legal responsibilities or for fraudulent purposes.

How do I change my name?

Any person over the age of 18 whose birth is registered in Western Australia or who ordinarily lives in Western Australia can apply to change their name. To do this, you need to apply to the WA Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages on 1300 305 021. It is located at Level 10, 141 St. George's Terrace, Perth WA 6000. For details on how to do this visit Births Deaths and Marriages at the Department of the Attorney General's website.

If you are applying to change your name and/or the names of your children because of severe family violence in some cases, where the name of the father is not included on the child's birth certificate, or if included, the father's consent has been obtained or a court order authorising the change has been granted, you can apply to have the usual fee waived. For an information sheet on what information you have to provide and the statutory declaration needed by a competent person in support of your application contact the WA Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages on 1300 305 021.

How do I apply to register my change of name?

Visit the Births Deaths and Marriages website to find out how to register a change of name for an adult.

Can I have my change of name noted on my birth record?

If you have changed your name by an "Application to Register Change of Name" and if you were born in Western Australia, you can apply to the registrar to have the name on your birth record changed also. Visit the Births Deaths and Marriages website for the form you need.

What effect does marriage have on my name?

You are not legally required to change your family name (surname). If you want to you can:

  • use your spouse's family name on marriage  
  • combine family names with your spouse  
  • return to your family name at birth or after adoption after getting divorced or separated
  • use a former married name
  • return to a previous legal name that has been formally registered.

You do not need to register a formal change of name if the change falls within one of the above categories. Your marriage certificate is sufficient proof of your change of name and there may be times when you will also need to produce your birth certificate as proof.

If you decide to change your name after marriage, married couples and their children under 18 years of age may apply on one form.

Your marriage record will only show your name at the time of marriage. It will not record your name after marriage.

What if I am in a de facto relationship?

De facto couples (whether of different or same sex) and their children under 18 may apply on one form to register a change of name. Evidence of de facto relationship must be provided.

Can I change the name of my child?

See Changing a child's name.

If you are under 18 and want to find out how to change your name, visit the Lawstuff website.

Where can I get more information?

  • For more information on changing your name or the name of a child and to get the forms you need go to Births Deaths and Marriages at the Department of the Attorney General's website and select Change of name.


Last reviewed: 20/11/2015

Last modified:


The information displayed on this page is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have a legal problem, you should see a lawyer. Legal Aid Western Australia aims to provide information that is accurate, however does not accept responsibility for any errors or omissions in the information provided on this page or incorporated into it by reference.