Republic of Ireland
If you’re a Irish national
How to change your name
If you’re an Irish national you have the right to change your name at any time.
If you’re Irish and you’re resident in the U.K., you can change your U.K. documents and records (e.g. driving licence, NHS records, etc.) to be in your new name, using a deed poll (or marriage certificate, divorce documents, etc.) as proof of your change of name.
You should be using a U.K. deed poll (not an Irish deed poll), because —
- you’ll need a U.K. deed poll to update your U.K. records
- you need to use and be known by your new name (in the U.K.) before you can update your (Irish) passport.
To change your Irish passport / identity card, you’ll need to show that you’ve been using your new name (in the U.K.) for two years, by showing an updated driving licence, pay slips, or bank statements etc. (in your new name). These need to date back at least two years, so you’ll have to wait two years (after changing your name) until you can do this.
(This is an Irish requirement and does not affect your change of name in the U.K. It’s just a requirement for updating your Irish passport.)
If you were born on the island of Ireland, and you didn’t have any other nationality at the time of your birth, you will be an Irish national.
If you were born on the island of Ireland, and you were (at the time of your birth) a national of the U.K. or another country, you may also be either —
- an Irish national
- someone entitled to Irish nationality
If you’re “entitled” to Irish nationality, you will become an Irish national the moment you do something that only Irish nationals can do, such as applying for an Irish passport, or voting in an Irish presidential election.
Enrolling your deed poll
Ireland is not a Commonwealth country, so it is not possible to enrol a deed poll at the Royal Courts of Justice (unless you’re also a British national or a national of another Commonwealth country). We always recommend against enrolling your deed poll, whether you are British or otherwise. Enrolling is not required by any body or organisation in the U.K.
British nationals living in Ireland
If you’re British and you live in Ireland, you’ll need to have a U.K. deed poll to change your name and update your documents and records in the U.K.
If you’re a dual British / Irish national, and you live in Ireland, you may need to have an Irish deed poll (to update Irish records) as well as a U.K. one (to update British records).
You do not need to legalise your deed poll (attach an apostille) for use in Ireland.