Here is the Name Change Procedure in India

The process of changing one’s name is a process that brings with it certain legal obligations that have to be followed. The objective of these required obligations is to make sure that a citizen who changes his or her name does so with legal intentions, bona fide motives and not to create any form of fraud or misrepresentation before other citizens, institutions, authorities or offices.

Procedure for Name Change in Gazette of India

The procedure involved in the name changing process includes the following steps –

Step 1 – Affidavit of Change of Name – In the Name Change Procedure, one must first visit a Notary in the District Court of his or her city. The individual must then acquire an Affidavit for Name Change. The Affidavit for name change should be on a stamp paper of Rs.10 or Rs. 20. The details required to be filled out by the individual in the affidavit are as follows –  Previous Name, Current Name, Your Complete Address, Reason for Change of Name.

Step 2 – Newspaper Publication – The second step in the Name Change Procedure is for the individual to get his or her Change of Name published in 2 Local Leading Newspapers. It is also important to note that the individual must collect at least 10 copies of both Newspapers as these may prove to be helpful for any other documents and legal proceedings in the future. The Newspaper Publication must include certain details. They are as follows – The Previous Name, The Current Name, Husband’s Name & Date of Marriage (In the case of married women), Current Address, Date of Affidavit and Name of Notary.

Step 3 – Publication of Change of Name in the Gazette of India – The last and final step is to get the individual to get his or her Change of Name published in the Gazette of India. For This Procedure, the concerned citizen will need to send a few documents in an Envelope to the following address: Controller of Publication, Department of Publication, Civil Lines, Delhi-54. The Central Gazette office is situated at Civil Lines, New Delhi.This Publication in Gazette of India can be used as a Supporting Document for Change of Name in almost all other Major Indian Documents like Indian Passport, Pan Card, Election Card (Voter ID Card), Bank Account and Ration Card.

All Done? Gazette Notification is the final step to changing one’s name. It gives better legal validity to one’s  name change, as it is published by the Government.  Most Governmental and Semi-Governmental institutions insist upon producing a Gazette copy in order to change one’s name in the institution’s respective records. Such institutions include the UPSC, Income Tax department, UIDAI, Public Sector Banks and so on.

Precautions and Details During The Gazette Application Process

  • The applicant must ensure that the affidavit or the annexure for the name change is not older than one year. If so, the individual will have to create another affidavit for the purpose of Gazette notification, and if not, it will be considered as invalid according to the Gazette.
  • The applicant must ensure that the mandatory newspaper advertisement contains the individual’s father or husband’s name.
  • The applicant must self-attest all id proofs, photographs and affidavit copies and so on.
  • The C.D proforma shall contain the old name typed in place of a signature.
  • If the application of the applicant mentions a change in religion or adoption of a name or surname of a different religion, there should be an undertaking mentioning that. The mandatory newspaper ad must also mention the same.
  • If the given precautions are not complied with, it leads to an unwanted delay in the process of publication wherein the applicant will be required to submit corrected versions of documents. It will be difficult to coordinate additional documents sent, given the manual methods used in the government department of publication.
  • Three individually drafted documents along with copies of the affidavit, newspaper, photographs, demand draft and a compact disc containing the notification matter must be included in the Gazette notification. All documents must be signed by the applicant and the witnesses before it is sent to the Gazette authorities.
  • It will take at least 2 months for the notification to be published by the Gazette authorities. Manual processing is one of the factors for the long duration coupled with a high backlog from all parts of the country. It is important to remember that the Gazette department is not fully computerized.
  • The applicant will not receive a hard copy of the Central Gazette that is published. Soft copies of the gazette edition shall be downloaded and printed by the applicant before submitting before any authority. The e-gazette website gets updated and features a new edition every Saturday.
  • Employees of the Central Government are additionally required to submit a ‘Deed for Change of name’ in accordance to the ministry of home affairs.
  • Gazette notification is not mandatory for a passport. Passport Authority of India does not mandate Gazette notification as a prerequisite for changing one’s name in passport.

What about in the case of minors name change procedure?

The reasons for the name change are varied. The causes could be astrology, numerology, the minor’s interests, inclusion or rejection of surname or change of the last name due to divorce or remarriage of parents. Hence, an affidavit is required when the minor’s name is to be changed or corrected. The procedure is discussed below –

Step 1 – Drafting – The affidavit should be drafted by including all the components required. The components of a minor’s name change affidavit include Parent’s name, age and address, Name of the spouse ( of the creator of the affidavit), Minor’s name, DOB and place of birth, Minor’s old name and new name, Reason for name change, Deponent’s signature and Date of creation of the affidavit.

Step 2 – Printing – The draft should be printed on a stamp paper of recognized value. The Affidavit for Name Change of a minor should be on a stamp paper of Rs.10 or Rs. 20. The printing charges for publication of change of name is Rs. 1100/- only. The amount will have to be submitted or remitted in advance in cash or by Demand Draft/India Postal Order drawn up in favour of Controller of Publication, Department of Publication, Civil Lines, Delhi-54.

Step 3 – Signatures and attestations – The affidavit requires the signature of the deponent Parent (s) creating the affidavit. The affidavit for the name change of a minor then needs attestation from a Notary Public, Oaths Commissioner or an Advocate S.E.M. Attach two passport size photographs of parents(either mother or father), whoever is giving the declaration and one of the minor son/daughter. If the case is sent by registered post, the photographs have to be attested by Gazetted officer/oath commissioner/notary public. In the case of a family living abroad, he/she will submit duly attested by the respective Indian Embassy/Indian High Commission.

Step 4 – Publication – The next step in the Name Change Procedure for minors is for the parents/guardians to get the minor’s Change of Name published in 2 Local Leading Newspapers. The affidavit is now ready and the name change is published as an advertisement. Newspapers have a special section for such advertisements.They are as follows – The Previous Name, The Current Name, Parent’s/Guardian’s names, Date of Affidavit and Name of Notary.

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