Assume a last name due to marriage

You can assume your spouse’s last name after marriage on government documents such as:

  • health card
  • driver’s licence
  • Ontario Photo Card
  • enhanced driver’s licence

There is no cost to assume your spouse’s last name on the above documents. When you assume a spouse’s last name after marriage, it does not change the name on your Ontario birth registration (and birth certificate). You should change all your identification documents to reflect the new last name.

To change your last name on these documents, visit a ServiceOntario centre with your:

  • marriage certificate
    • this is not the “Record of Solemnization of Marriage” given to you by the person who performed your marriage
    • you must apply for a certificate as one is not issued to you automatically
  • current photo health card (if you do not have a photo health card, you must bring 3 original documents to prove you are a Canadian citizen and Ontario resident)
  • driver’s licence, enhanced driver’s licence or Ontario Photo Card

When updating your last name on documents issued by other organizations, contact each organization that you have an account with and ask what they require to make the change. Most organizations will ask you to show a copy of your marriage certificate.

Find a ServiceOntario centre

Download the marriage certificate application

Cost

$0

Delivery

You will receive your updated documents by mail in 6 to 8 weeks.

Legally change your last name

If you choose not to assume a last name due to marriage and you want to legally change your last name, you will need to apply for a legal name change.

Elect to go back to your previous last name

If you elected to legally change your last name due to marriage or conjugal relationship, you can change your name back to your previous last name by completing an Election to Resume Former Surname - Form 2. This service is only available if you legally changed your last name using the discontinued Election to Change Surname service.

When you legally change your name back to your previous name, you get a certificate of name change and a new birth certificate (if you were born in Ontario). You can use these documents to update other government documents (for example, driver’s licence).

Contact our office to obtain the Election to Resume Former Surname – Form 2 by:

  • calling Toll-free: 1-800-461-2156 for all of North America (areas outside of Toronto), 416-325-8305 for the Greater Toronto Area or internationally; TTY: 416-325-3408; or
  • sending a written request to:
    ServiceOntario
    Office of the Registrar General
    P.O. Box 3000
    189 Red River Rd
    Thunder Bay, ON
    P7B 5WO

Submit by mail

Mail your completed forms, payment and required documents to:

ServiceOntario
Office of the Registrar General
P.O. Box 3000
189 Red River Rd
Thunder Bay, ON
P7B 5W0

Submit in person

Bring in your completed form, payment and required documents to:

ServiceOntario
47 Sheppard Avenue East, unit 417, 4th Floor
Toronto, ON
M2N 5N1

Cost

$25

Delivery

If your application is complete and accurate, a change of name certificate and your new birth certificate (if you were born in Ontario) will be mailed within 6 to 8 weeks from the date we receive the application.

Translated documents

If all or part of a document sent in support of your application is not written in English or French, you must send us an English or French translation. If a translation is required, your application must include:

  • a complete photocopy of the document requiring translation;
  • a complete photocopy of the translation of the original document; and
  • an original written declaration from one of the following:
    1. a professional translator, who indicates their professional status as a translator (this declaration is not required to be sworn), or
    2. a person who is not a professional translator (this declaration must be sworn in front of a commissioner for taking affidavits)

The translator’s original written declaration must state:

  • the translator understands English or French and the language of the original document, and
  • the translator is of the opinion that the translation is complete and correct

If the translator’s original written declaration appears on the translation of the original document, the translation must be submitted in its original form. A photocopy will not be accepted.

If you need a translator, you can search for one in the Association of Translators and Interpreters of Ontario’s directory.