Changing one’s name, adding or removing a letter from the name, or simply putting in some initials is as common in India, as in any other part of the world. Most Indians have a deep rooted belief in numerology and vastu, and besides, many women change their first and last names after getting married. The process of changing your name is the country, though being simple and easy, is fairly lengthy, with forms to be filled out, and newspaper advertisements to be made.
Understanding the process in detail will help you in ensuring that everything goes smoothly and you are able to change your name legally without facing any hassle. The process of changing your name legally in India consists of three steps, and these are, submitting affidavit, ad publication, and gazette notification. Here is a detailed overview of the three steps of the process.
Submitting the affidavit is the first step of this legal procedure of name change. You need a notary for the completion of this process. The notary will tell you about the stamp paper of certain value that you need for the affidavit. You will have to provide the details of name and new name, present address, and reasons for name change in the paper that you get. The affidavit needs to have the sign and stamp of two witnesses, of the rank of gazetted officers, after it gets printed in the plain stamp paper.
If you are a central government employee, then the procedure for changing your name falls under the guidelines of Ministry of Home Affairs O.M. No. – 190016/1/87-Estt (Dated 12.03.1987). Your notary will provide you further details about the regulations. Make sure you keep the affidavit safe since it is a crucial document for dealing with any legal formalities in future.
Publication of the ad
The next step is publishing the ad in any local newspaper that you have undergone a name change. You must select at least two newspapers for this purpose, i.e., one published in English, and the other published in the state’s official language. For instance, you can opt for The Hindu and Dinakaran if you are a resident of Tamil Nadu. You can put the advertisement in Anandabazar Patrika and The Times of India if you are a resident of West Bengal. State the details of your new name, old name, date of birth, and address when you send the request to the daily newspapers.
Notification in the gazette
The process of changing your name is legally complete after the notification is published in the gazette. The gazette notification for the name change is optional for others but compulsory for the government employees. However, you just need to send a couple of documents over for publication and you will have a significant proof of the name change. Thus, it makes sense to go for the notification in the gazette.
You will need a copy of the Deed changing name form, or a letter of declaration from you. Make sure you carry two attested photos and original copies of the advertisements along with the dates. Take you identity proof and address proof with you as well. Contact Controller’s office of Publication to know the exact details of the documents that you need for the notification.
Your work for legally changing your name is complete and it is crucial to save all the documents for future reference. You will need these documents for officially changing your name in the certificates, bank records, and any other places where it might be necessary.