Changing your name

Changing your name is a big decision. You can change your name informally by asking people around to call you what you like, but you can consider formally changing your name if you want formal recognition of your new name. It is important to talk to family and friends about your decision – especially since people under 18 can’t change their name without permission from parents.

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Informally Changing Your Name

If you want to use a different name, you can change your name informally by asking people like family, friends and your school to call you a different name.  You didn’t need to fill in any forms for this.  Changing your name informally is a free and easy way to change your name, and it gives you time to decide if you want to stay with your new name or change it back.

But if you change your name informally like this, you might run into problems when you apply for your driver’s licence, a passport, a Medicare card or Centrelink because there’s no official record to show that you’ve changed your name.

Formally Changing Your Name

If you’re under 18 and you want to change your name formally, you’ll generally need the permission of both of your parents/guardians. Your parents/guardians will have to apply to Births, Deaths and Marriages Registry. To change your name in Tasmania, you need to have been born there  or lived there for at least 12 months.

If you weren’t born in Tasmania and you don’t usually live there, then you need to apply to change your name in the state/territory you were born in/have lived in for a certain period of time.  To find out how about the laws in other states, please click Change State at the top of the screen.

Generally both of your parents or guardians will need to sign the form to change your name. You can change your name with the signature of only one parent if:

  • only one parent is named on your birth certificate; or
  • one of your parents has died or;
  • a Magistrate approves the change
  • One of your parents applies to a magistrate and the magistrate makes an order to change your name because they think this is in your best interests

How to Apply to Change your Name

To apply to change your name, you need to fill in a form which is available here. You also need to provide:

  • Proof of identity of your parents and yourself
  • Proof that both of your parents agree to the name change (unless it is a special situation where only one parent’s consent is required)
  • If you are between 12 and 18: proof that you agree to the name change.

All these documents then need to be sent to the Tasmanian Department of Births, Deaths and Marriages.

How much does it cost to change your name?

It costs $ 196.18 to change your name formally.

Can my parents change my name if I don’t want to change it?

We sometimes get asked by young people if their parents can change their name without their permission, for example if one parent wants you to use their name after a family divorce.   

If you are over 12 years old your parents can’t change your name unless you agree or a court decides that it’s in your best interest. In deciding what’s in your best interests, the court will take into account:


  • Your view
  • How you feel about each parent
  • How often you see both of your parents
  • Any feelings of being confused about your identity; and
  • If you’ll be embarrassed by having a different name from the person you normally live with


I’m over 18 – how can I change my name?

If you were born in Tasmania or you have lived there for over 12 months then you can apply to the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registry to change your name. If you are under 18 and you are married (or have been married before), you can change your name in the same way.

To apply to change your name, you need to fill in a form which is available here. You also need to provide proof of your identity

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