Do you want to legally change your name? No matter the reason, the process in Alberta is relatively straightforward. Here’s some information on how to apply for a legal name change for yourself or your child.
Common Reasons for a Legal Name Change
In Alberta, a legal name change is required if you want to change your name for reasons other than marriage, divorce, or correcting information such as parentage or a spelling error. For instance, if you're changing your name for personal or cultural reasons, you must apply for a legal name change however if you need to correct a spelling error you would apply for an amendment of your birth record.
Residential school survivors and persons who were part of the Sixties Scoop can reclaim their Indigenous name without charge. Descendants, including children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and spouses or partners are also eligible for no-cost name changes. Please visit the Government of Alberta website for more information.
Eligibility and Required Documentation for a Legal Name Change
To legally change your name, the name of your spouse/partner or your child’s name you must be at least 18 years of age and an Alberta resident. You must also remain a resident throughout the entire name change process.
When applying to change the name of your spouse, proof of marital status is required. If you’re applying to change your child’s name and they’re between the ages of 12 and 17, you must obtain their consent and provide additional documentation, including proof of relationship.
If you are under the age of 18, you may apply for a legal name change if you are one of the following; legally married, widowed, divorced or the parent and/or guardian of a child.
How to Apply
To apply for a legal name change, you must complete the Application for Change of Name, available on the Government of Alberta website and gather the necessary supporting documents, including:
Government-issued Photo ID. Acceptable proof of identity includes a valid passport, driver’s licence or permanent resident card. You must take the original document with you to a registry agent office. Faxes, photocopies and scans of ID will be rejected.
Proof of name document. A proof of name document can be a citizenship card/certificate, permanent resident card or birth certificate. If you were born in Alberta you’ll be asked to surrender your birth certificate and Vital Statistics will replace it at no charge once the name change has been completed.
Electronic fingerprint confirmation letter. This document is required for anyone over the age of 12. Contact a fingerprinting agency, keep in mind that you’ll have to pay a fingerprinting fee. Only electronic fingerprints will be accepted.
Criminal record check or police information check. If you’re 18 or older, you’ll need to provide a criminal record check or police information check. It must be submitted within 30 days of issuance from a recognized law enforcement agency.
Once you’ve gathered all the necessary documents, you’ll need to visit a registry agent office. The agent will review your documents and send them to Vital Statistics for processing. The process can take anywhere from four to twelve weeks and costs $120, plus additional registry agent fees.
Legal Name Change Services in Alberta
At Registry @ South Trail Crossing Ltd., we offer quick and efficient vital statistics services, including legal name changes. Our agents will walk you through the process to make it as seamless as possible. Contact us today to learn how we can help you through the application process.