Changing your Name

Changing your name is an important decision. Your name is your identity. Therefore, to protect you from identity fraud, changes to your name must be recorded accurately and securely.

In most instances a legal change of name will change your birth record.

If you want to USE YOUR SPOUSE’S LAST NAME (married or common-law)

You do not need to apply for a legal change of name. For more information on how to change your name with various agencies if you are legally married or in a common-law relationship, click on this link.


You can apply for a legal change of name if you are:

  • at least 19 years old;
  • a Canadian citizen, permanent resident or otherwise legally entitled to remain or live in Canada; and
  • a resident of the Northwest Territories and have lived in the Northwest Territories for at least three months in a row within the one year period before application date.

You may also be eligible if you meet the above requirements, but:

  • are less than 19 years old; and
  • are a spouse, or have been a spouse; or
  • have lawful custody of a child.

Contact Vital Statistics for more information.

Note: Applications must be accompanied with the required fee in the form of a cheque or money order payable to the Government of the Northwest Territories. Payment may also be made by credit card. The fee includes one change of name certificate.


Change of Name (includes one large certificate) $134.00
Each additional individual included on an adult application $54.00
Change of Name Certificate (duplicate) $27.00
Use of Common-Law Spouse’s Last Name Statutory Declaration (certified copy) $22.00
Breakdown of Spousal Relationship Statutory Declaration (certified copy) $22.00

How To Apply For A Legal Change Of Name

Am I ready to submit a Change of Name Application?

To ensure your application is successful, please see the information on eligibility and fees.

To apply, you must complete the change of name application package.

Application Requirements

  • An applicant must complete the form. This could be the person changing his/her own name OR a parent applying to change his/her child’s name OR both.
  • Must include original birth certificates for each person born in Canada and changing a name legally. These birth certificates will not be returned. (If born outside Canada, provide certified copies of immigration papers, permanent resident card or citizenship card.)
  • All fees must be included with the application.

Consent of Parent or Legal Guardian and Child

Any person who has lawful custody or access to a child must complete a consent form for a child's change of name. The child's written consent is required if the child is 12 years of age or older. If the child's last name is changes to that of the spouse, the spouse's consent is also required.

Note: An applicant may be required to provide documentation to show that he/she has legal custody of the child(ren).

Who is notified about my change of name?

Most changes of name will be published in the Northwest Territories Gazette. Information that will be shared in the notice is the person’s full former and present names, the person’s date of birth, the name of the community in which the person resides and the effective date of the change. The following agencies will be notified:

  • Clerk of the Supreme Court of the Northwest Territories
  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Maintenance Enforcement Administrator
  • NWT Healthcare Registration unit, Health Services Administration
  • Vital Statistics Office of the province of birth, if not NWT