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  • Writer's pictureThe Kaplan Team

THOUGHT OF THE WEEK What's in a name?

Updated: Apr 7, 2020

In terms of the Births and Deaths Registrations Act, no person may assume or describe themselves under any surname other than that recorded in the population register or under which such person obtained permanent residence in South Africa.

For practical reasons, fortunately:

(a) a woman may assume the surname of her husband after marriage;

(b) a married or divorced woman or widow may revert to her maiden surname or any prior surname which she legally had;

(c) a woman, married or divorced, may also join to her married surname any prior surname she had at any time to form a double-barrel surname.

One may amend your surname by making application to the Director General in the prescribed form and show good cause for the change of surname and thereafter, once approved, have such change published in the Government Gazette.

Contact our professionals for assistance.

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This article is not intended to constitute legal advice and is produced for information purposes only and to provide a general understanding of the legal position relating to the topic. It is recommended that advice relating to the specific circumstances of your situation be sought from our attorneys before acting upon the content of this article. This article was written at a particular point in time and accordingly may not always reflect the most recent legal developments, if any, applicable to the relevant topic. Kaplan Blumberg and its partners and/or employees, are not responsible for any consequences which may follow upon any decision taken to act upon the information provided in this article.

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