We use "Cookies" this website to improve your experience and to provide us with anonymous information. Read more here. [x] Close

Family Law Blog

Comment on divorce & family law 

How many surnames do you want to have?


A German couple has just been refused permission by the Courts to have a long hyphenated surname. So what?

Well, ask the footballer Shaun Wright Phillips for example. He added the name of the ex footballer (Ian) Wright to his surname when he became his stepfather which seems perfectly reasonable to me. The rights of step parents are still developing and are surely well behind the society we all live in.

And many women these days do not wish to give up their name especially if they have created some business value in it as is often the case. And increasingly someone are seeing this as an issue of personal right and not wishing to appear to belong to their husband.

Actually, there is no law saying that your name changes upon marriage, it is just custom so does not have to be followed.

But changing the surname of a child is an especially sensitive and rule bound subject and should only be attempted after proper advice from a specialist family solicitor.

Apart from the above, marriage, civil partnerships or divorce could result in a change of name for one or in some cases both parties. It can be difficult to get government bodies and other large organisations to recognise this fact. Here are some tips.

Finally, as a good example of someone who makes do with a simpler name than that which they were given the explorer Sir Ranulph Twistleton-Wykeham-Fiennes, seem to find it simpler to stick simply to Ranulph Fiennes!

Andrew Woolley
Divorce Solicitor

Loading comments...
What do you think?

Have your say


Receive your FREE guide

Your free guide will be available to download immediately and a copy sent by email. Your email address will not be used to send any further correspondence without your permission.