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Responsible for the service Digital and Population Data Services Agency

Change of surname

  • Service
  • Nationwide except the Åland Islands
  • Public service

If you want to change your surname, please fill in the name change application form. You can use the same name change application form if you want a two-part surname or if you want to give up a name that is part of your current two-part surname. You can also use the same application form to add or remove a hyphen from your current two-part surname.

You can apply for a change of surname if you live in Finland. You can also apply for a name change if you live abroad (excluding Sweden, Norway and Denmark) and you are a Finnish citizen.

If you have already changed your surname abroad and this was done following a decision by a state authority, you do not need to apply for a name change in Finland. In that case, you can request that the name change is recorded in Finland free of charge.

You can have a surname that is already in use in the following situations:

  • You have used the surname in the past or it has been in your family for five generations
  • You want to change or shorten a foreign surname to a more accessible form
  • The surname is used by a spouse or a partner and they give their consent to the change of name
  • The surname is used by a sibling or a child and you obtain a consent from all persons who use the name
  • The surname is used by a foster parent
  • The change of name is considered particularly justified because of a change in family relationships or any other particularly compelling reason.

If you are applying for a surname that is not used by anyone, we will ask the Name Committee for a statement. The Name Committee will assess whether the name has the right characteristics for a surname, whether it is suitable as a surname, or whether the name can be confused with a protected identity (e.g. association or company name). New names will be published on our website for 30 days before approving a name that is not in use by anyone. Decisions on new names will be based on the opinion of the Name Committee and the documentation submitted by you.

Do the following

Fill in a name change application at Nimenmuutospalvelu (only in Finnish and Swedish) if

  • you want to apply for a surname that you have used previously

Alternatively, you can apply for the name change online using a form in the service. Signing in to the service requires strong authentication. A guardian or a spouse can also sign the form. You can also send your application by mail or by email. You can also complete the application in person at your local registry office. For the application, clearly state the letters you want to include in the surname in upper case and lower case letters.

We will not process your application until you have paid the processing fee. The fee will not be refunded even if you withdraw your application or you receive a negative decision.

The Digital and Population Data Services Agency may ask you for further information, such as missing certificates or other documents to process your name change request. If necessary, we may also ask for the signature of another guardian, a minor or a spouse if this is missing from your application.

In some cases, we may seek the opinion of the Name Committee and it usually takes a few months to process your name change.

Once the matter is resolved, you will receive a written decision. Your surname will change in the population register on the day of the decision. After the name change, you will automatically receive a new Kela card, but you will have to renew your passport, personal ID card and driving license yourself.

If you are not satisfied with the decision, you have the right to appeal to the Administrative Court.

To whom and on what terms

If changing a child's name would result in the child not sharing a name with either parent, or if after the change the child would have a different name to their siblings, a special case would have to be made to change the child’s name. A shared family surname is particularly important for children under 15 years of age. We may request further information from you.

A guardian must apply for a change of name on behalf of a minor. If a minor has two or more guardians, the application requires the signatures of all the guardians.

If a minor is over 10 years of age, the change of name requires his or her written consent.

Persons over the age of 15 can apply for a change of surname without a guardian’s approval. Guardians have the right to submit statements with the application. If a person over the age of 15 and their guardians disagree on the change of name, the minor's wishes take precedence.

We process applications in the order they were received.

A fee is charged for the service.

If you are applying for a surname that you have previously used, the processing fee is 45 euros.

If you are applying for another surname, the processing fee is 110 euros.

Basic information

The service is provided byDigital and Population Data Services Agency
Responsible for the serviceDigital and Population Data Services Agency
Area Whole Finland (except Åland)
Available languagesFinnish, Swedish
Text edited by: Digital and Population Data Services Agency
Updated: 25/2/2020