How To Change Your Name In Singapore Through A Deed Poll
Published by Bonsai Law
Have you ever wondered whether it's possible to change your name in Singapore? Well, it's certainly possible but there are a number of steps you'll have to follow before you can legally change your name. The very first step you have to take to change your name is to execute a Deed Poll, a legal document that you can obtain from a law firm.
Bonsai Law Corporation charges a flat fee of $50 to execute a Deed Poll at our office.
What Exactly Is A Deed Poll?
A Deed Poll, or a Deed of Change of Name, as it is sometimes referred to, is a document drafted by a lawyer that states your declaration to renounce your previous name and to start using your new name from the date the Deed Poll was drafted onwards.
This Deed Poll has to be signed and witnessed by a lawyer, and sealed before it can be submitted to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (“ICA”).
How Do I Obtain This Deed Poll In Singapore?
You can book an appointment with our law firm to execute a Deed Poll by following the steps below:-
- If you are above 21 years old, you will be required to bring your original NRIC.
- If you are changing the name(s) for your child(ren), BOTH
parents have to come down to sign the deed poll. It is not necessary
for the child(ren) to come. You will be required to bring:-
- Both parents’ original NRIC; and
- Child(ren)’s original birth certificates and NRIC(s) (if any).
- Book your appointment according to our calendar below AND check your junk folder if you do not receive email confirmation. Do also note that we operate strictly by appointment only and we do not entertain walk-in clients.
- Come to our office at 1 North Bridge Road #08-08, High Street Centre, Singapore 179094.
- We only accept payment by CASH or PAYNOW.
How Long Does It Take To Do The Deed Poll?
Generally, the entire process from drafting to signing the Deed Poll at our office takes around 5 to 15 minutes.
Can Anyone Execute A Deed Poll In Singapore?
Unfortunately, there is a minimum age requirement of 21 to execute a Deed Poll in Singapore. Minors (those under the age of 21) will require both parents to sign and witness the Deed Poll on the minor's behalf.
Even in the event of a divorce between the minor's parents, both parents will still need to sign the Deed Poll for the purposes of changing the minor's name, unless one of the parents has sole custody of the minor, in which case, the parent with sole custody can sign on behalf of the minor.
What About Foreigners? Can Non-Singapore Citizens Change Their Name In Singapore?
It depends. For the most part, a Singapore Deed Poll will be recognized in changing the name of a foreigner within Singapore but whether a Singapore Deed Poll will be recognized outside of Singapore depends on that country's laws and regulations regarding changing a name in that country.
If you are a foreigner, you should check directly with
your country's embassy or consulate office to find out whether it is
possible to use a Singapore Deed Poll in your country.
What Are The Details I Can Change In My Name In Singapore?
It is possible to change most of the details in your name in Singapore. You can edit the English characters, Mandarin characters or Tamil characters in your name, change the positioning of your surname, alter the punctuation in your name, add or delete your hanyu pinyin name, etc.
Common reasons for executing deed polls include changing the Mandarin characters for feng shui reasons, adding a Christian / English name or to change a surname for child after a divorce.
Do note that a Deed Poll only relates to changing your name in Singapore. You are unable to change your race or religion with a Deed Poll.
So I Can Change My Name To Anything I Want?
ICA reserves the right to reject the change of name. While we have seen many unusual names accepted, certain names spelt exactly the same or resembling that of notable personalities may be rejected.
What Do I Have To Do After Executing The Deed Poll To Change My Name In My NRIC / Passport?
After the Deed Poll is completed, you will need to submit your Deed Poll to the ICA within 28 days of executing the Deed Poll.
It is possible for you to do this in person at the ICA, or to do it through the ICA's online service. The processing time through the online service is around 3 working days and the fees payable for their service is currently $60.
Subsequently, you can then collect your new NRIC at the ICA itself, selected Post Offices or through ICA's iCollect Self-Service machine located on the ground floor of the ICA building.
Operating hours at the ICA are currently from 8.00 am to 4.30 pm on Mondays to Fridays, and 8.00 am to 12.30 pm on Saturdays.
Once you have gotten your new NRIC, you will need to obtain a new Passport within 7 days. Do note that you cannot change your name in your birth certificate or marriage certificate. Subject to ICA's regulations, it is still possible to change the name of an infant below the age of one in the birth certificate with a Deed Poll.
What Else Do I Have To Do After Changing My NRIC And Passport?
Subsequently, you will need to inform the relevant private institutions in your life about the change of name. This can and usually includes banks, brokerages, insurance companies, telecommunication companies, academic institutions, employer, etc.
Generally, a number of private institutions will request for a photocopy of your new NRIC as well as a photocopy of your deed poll. If necessary, we also provide a template letter to inform these private institutions as well.