You do not need to register a name change if you:

  • get married in Australia and take the surname of your spouse or partner, or add their surname to your name
  • have divorced, did not register a name change with BDM when you married, and now wish to:
    • revert to your maiden name or former surname, or
    • remove your spouse or partner's surname from your name.

You do need to register a name change if you:

  • registered a change of name with BDM when you married, or
  • your name has changed or been altered for another reason.

You can register your name change with BDM, online.

Fees are attached to the application with the total amount varying depending on your choice of certificate.


You're eligible to change your name online if:

  • you're not a restricted person
  • your birth is registered in NSW
  • your birth is not registered in NSW and a protection order has been made to protect you and/or your children from domestic violence
  • you were born overseas and have been a resident in NSW for 3 consecutive years immediately prior to your application.

To register a change of name for a child under 18 years, visit Register a change of name (child).

What you need

In addition:

For an adult born overseas:

  • evidence of your Australian citizenship or visa
  • evidence of your place of birth
  • certified documentation that you have lived in NSW for the 3 consecutive years prior to your application.

How to apply

  1. Check the eligibility requirements.
  2. Select the 'Apply online' button.
    Note: You can save and resume your application, but if you have not submitted it within 90 days, any details you’ve entered will be deleted.
  3. Follow the prompts to register your change of name.

You will receive an email with your Online Reference Number (ORN) and a receipt to confirm your application and payment.

If you're not able to apply online:

  1. Download and complete the form Application to register a change of name for an adult – PDF.
  2. Make sure you have all the required documentation.
  3. Visit a Service NSW Centre and lodge your application in person, or post it to the address on the form.

Proof of identity (POI) documents

There are 3 POI categories and a fourth category to confirm your NSW residential address (if necessary).

You need to provide one document from each category.

Category 1: Your right to reside in Australia

If you were born or registered in NSW:

  • the original copy of your NSW birth certificate

If you were born overseas:

  • Australian citizenship certificate
  • Australian certificate of registration by descent
  • ImmiCard
  • New Zealand citizenship certificate
  • New Zealand birth certificate.

Category 2: Link between photo and signature

  • Australian passport
  • Overseas passport containing current visa
  • ​Australian driver licence
  • Australian firearms licence
  • Proof of age card, or photocard issued by an Australian state or territory
  • NSW Corrective Services Certificate.

Note: If you cannot provide photo ID, you'll need to attach a passport size photo signed by a guarantor.

Category 3: Usage in the community

  • ​Medicare card
  • Private health care card 
  • Centrelink pensioner concession card, or other entitlement card
  • Australian Department of Veterans' Affairs card
  • Security licence
  • Student or tertiary education ID card.

Category 4: Proof of residential address

You'll need to provide a document confirming your residential address if none of the POI documents you've selected shows your address.

Examples of documents could include, but are not limited to:

  • an electricity, water or gas bill issued within the last 3 months
  • a lease agreement
  • a council rates notice issued within the last 12 months.

If you were born overseas you'll need to provide 4 documents, as indicated on the online form, showing that you have been a resident in NSW for 3 consecutive years.

More information

  • If you're not an Australian citizen, or you were married overseas, check with the relevant agency for their requirements regarding proving your identity.
  • All identification and other supporting documents must be certified by one of the following qualified witnesses:
    • Justice of the Peace
    • notary public
    • legal practitioner (holding a current practising certificate)
    • a person authorised to administer an oath under section 26 of the Oaths Act 1900.
  • Certificates are sent by the Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages via registered post.
  • Do not laminate your certificates. Identity documents must be kept in their original state to be accepted by government agencies.
  • Documents provided as proof of identity may have their authenticity verified through the online national Document Verification Service (DVS).
  • In NSW, you can only change your name once in a 12-month period and 3 times in your lifetime.
  • If you cannot provide originals of a previously issued NSW birth certificate and/or a NSW change of name certificate, you'll need to provide the reasons why.
  • Restricted persons: Anyone under the supervision of the Commissioner of Corrective Services, the Mental Health Review tribunal, or the NSW Police Commissioner, must obtain approval from that authority before making an application. To not obtain approval is illegal.
Last updated: 6 December 2023