Change of name in Zimbabwe - marumeandfuridzo.com

Change of name in Zimbabwe

A person can change his or her forename or surname in Zimbabwe in accordance with the Births and Deaths Registration Act (Chapter 5:02) in particular section 18 of the said Act. The procedure for change of forename and for change of surname are slightly different.

If one wants to change his/her forename they may approach the Registrar-General and make an application for the registration of the change of forename in the register of births. Where the applicant is a minor the responsible parent or legal guardian must make the application. The Registrar-General will usually require evidence in support of the change. This may be in the form of affidavits or other evidence. In some instances the Registrar-General may require some persons to appear before him in person. There is therefore no requirement for a notarial deed of change of name where one only wants to change their forename.

The change of surname is done through a notarial deed of change of name. The person who wants to change their surname goes to a notary public who draws up a notarial deed of change of name based on the instructions given. The person appears and signs the deed in the presence of the notary public who will put his notary seal. A notice for the change of name is published/advertised once in the Government Gazette and in a daily newspaper. After the lapse of 14 days from the date of publication of the notice and if there are no objections the notarial deed of change of name is lodged together with the proof of publication at the Deeds Registry. If no queries are raised, the notarial deed of change of name will then be registered. The person will then apply to the Registrar-General for change of surname and submit the deed of change of name and advertisements. If the Registrar-General is satisfied, the change of name is effected.

Section 18(4) of the Act gives discretion to the Registrar-General to register a change of surname without a notarial deed of change of name if satisfied that the change of name is for a lawful purpose and is not for purposes of fraud or misrepresentation. This discretion can be used for example where a person has his direct grandfather’s name as his surname instead of the family surname used by the other family members. Unfortunately the Registrar-General rarely uses this discretion and invariably demands that anyone who wants to change their surname do so through a notarial deed of change of surname.

The contents of this article are for general information purposes only and do not constitute our legal or professional advice. We accept no responsibility for any loss or damage of whatsoever nature which may arise from reliance on any of the information published herein.

Copyright © Marume & Furidzo Legal Practitioners 2019

48 thoughts on “Change of name in Zimbabwe”

  1. I was raised in a family where my mother was remarried which is not my partenal family and I use their surname. I want to have my birth certificate and ID corrected.

      1. How Sir. My problem which I’m facing now is my year of birth can you change it to reduce it. And also change name and surname I want to use my own surname.

      1. I want to change one of my forenames and my surname. Can i do both forename and surname change at once. And how do I achieve this.

    1. My name is Vusumuzi Ngulube was born 13 June 1977 so I discovered that the surname am using is for my fathers stepfather I want to change it to use the original surname of my father which is Ndlovu and I want to add a name Victor please help

  2. Hi. I am 49 yrs and using myour mother’s surname. If possible I would want to change it to my father’s. I never saw him. But my mother told me my surname.

  3. i’m a minor i want to change my forename and change my surname to my mothers surname my father is deceased and my parents never got married

    1. I want to change my surname and put my father’s surname because I came to know him after 16 years they got divorced with my mother.

  4. Hie I want to change my daughter’ s surname from my ex husband’s surname to the real father’s surname is it possible

  5. muchinago munyetu

    I have got a serious problem pertaining the surname I am using right now.My father took an ID card using someone’s surname when he was young. It turned out that my father later got married to that guy’s young sister. My mother and father share the same surname. Now we are using our mother’s surname and l am afraid my real surname is going to vanish into thin air. I don’t have problem for me using my mother’s surname but my kids need to know their roots. Please if you can be of help let me know the costs.

  6. Tonderai mumba

    I was raised in a family where my mother was remarried which is not my partenal family and I use their surname. I want to have my birth certificate and ID corrected.

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