Applying for a passport after a name change
Q: My current passport is about to expire. Since acquiring it, I have changed my name through deed poll. Please advise me on what I need to do in order to renew my passport.
A: Various international and local organisations are reliant on the integrity of the passport in identifying persons with whom they do business. It is critical, therefore, that the name by which you are legally known is reflected in your travel document.
Anyone who has had a name change and is applying for a passport for the first time, or is renewing his or her passport, must submit a deed poll that is registered at the Registrar General's Department (RGD). Where the name change is done overseas, the deed poll must be registered with the relevant authority in that jurisdiction.
Your deed poll will provide documentary evidence that you have changed the name on your birth certificate to your current one. A photocopy of your deed poll is not acceptable. You must submit your original deed poll.
If you have a passport that has not yet expired, but wish to amend it to reflect your new name, you are free to do so. Upon applying for a change of name in your passport, your current one will be cancelled.
If you are renewing an expired passport with your new name, the process is the same, and the old passport must be presented with the application form. Note that each time an applicant renews his or her passport in subsequent years, the deed poll must be presented.
Birth certificate required
In addition to providing our office with your deed poll, the applicant must submit a birth certificate, which would bear his or her previous name. This will be recorded on the application form, even though it will not be shown on the passport. Note that a valid photo identification card is necessary for first-time applicants for passports.
A common mistake that is made by applicants who have changed their name is to misrepresent the order of their name on the application form. Therefore, in completing the application form, persons using a deed poll should take added care in ensuring that their names are represented correctly throughout the document, and in the correct order. For example; avoid writing your 'old' name as your 'new' name.
Also, there have been cases where a woman may change her Christian name and her marital status around the same time, and then incorrectly record her name on the application form. Persons in such circumstances should ensure that their married and maiden names are clearly stated so that there is no confusion in the order of names.
Other requirements for your passport application are:
Two colour passport-size photographs (only one must be certified).
Marriage certificate (for married women).
Fee of $4,500 for all first-time adult applications, as well as renewal.
Send questions, comments and suggestions to email@example.com and the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency will respond.
A common mistake that is made by applicants who have changed their name is to misrepresent the order of their name on the application form ... . Persons using a deed poll should take added care in ensuring that their names are represented correctly.