Mar
31
2014

Is there an official deed poll service in the UK?

Posted by Mark Keenan

The UK Government does not provide a “official deed poll service” in the UK.

Deed polls or change of name deeds have been created for many years, by Solicitors and notaries and often charged in excess of £100 for you to do so.

An official or legal deed poll is simply a document that is formatted correctly and uses the correct and established wording required under common law to change a name. The deed is a reference to how the document is executed, very much like a deed of separation or deeds to a house.

They have to be signed and dated in the presence of a witness who must supply their name, address and occupation. There is also a myth that in order for a deed poll to be legal, it must be witnessed by a professional person such as a lawyer or a doctor.

As long as the witness is not an immediate relative, any one can witness the deed poll on your behalf, so a work friend or neighbour is as good as as a solicitor or an accountant for the purposes of witnessing a deed poll. Once all the elements have come together, you have in your possession, a legal deed poll.

There also have been a number of recent rulings by the Advertising Standards Authorityregarding the use of the word “official” in  the advertising of legal deed poll services, which means that the word “official” cannot be used in promoting services on paid for channels on the internet such as Google adwords or bing.

Official-deedpolls.co.uk do not advertise as an official deed poll service, even though there is no official body for change of name services in the UK.