Changing your Baby’s Name After it’s Born

Changing your babys name after its born

Imagine the scenario: your bundle of joy has arrived, you’ve agonised over the name, before finally settling on something you feel is perfect, you’ve registered the name, only to realise a week later you’ve made a horrible mistake. Maybe something doesn’t feel right, or you’ve used the wrong spelling, or perhaps you’ve discovered that the initials spell out something less than ideal, whatever it is, this is a common issue and you’re not alone.

A common mistake…

You might be surprised to hear that this isn’t an unusual situation – many parents register their babies and soon after decide they have made a mistake with their chosen name. There are a variety of reasons why this happens, but if you speak to your friends about it it’s likely this will have happened to one of them, or someone they know. It’s a common mishap, but how can it be rectified?

Changing your baby’s name after registration…

It is possible to change your baby’s name after registration, it just takes a little patience and time. To change your baby’s after registration in the UK you will need to apply for a Deed Poll which will allow your child to be legally known by a different name. This will allow you to get all records and documents changed to the new name, however, it is not possible to get the name changed on a birth certificate, as this is a historical record of the fact the child existed at the time of birth. The whole process takes between 3 and 8 weeks.

A deed poll does allow you to get a passport or similar in the child’s new name, you just need to enclose the deed poll in your application to prove the new legally registered name.

In some circumstances though, it is possible to get the child’s name changed on the birth certificate. In this case, a new certificate will be issued by the Register Office, and then it is not necessary to apply for a deed poll.

Changing your baby’s name within the first 12 months of birth…

The law in the UK does allow for a change to your baby’s first name(s) within 12 months of the birth being registered, but forename changes can only be made once.

If you are changing your baby’s name in the first year you will need to get a form from the Register Office to be completed and returned. Once approved, you can then purchase copies of the amended birth certificate. Applications for correcting mistakes involving names can also be sent to the General Register Office (GRO). If the application is approved the correction will be included as a note in the margin.


If you need to change your baby’s name try not to worry, as soon as you have settled on a new name that you are confident and happy with simply start the process to change the name.

If you need a helping hand choosing a new baby name, try the Namey app for tens of thousands of baby ideas and inspiration based on name meaning, name origin and family names. Download the Namey app from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store today.

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