Our expert says:
Family law expert
You can change the surname of a minor:
If the child’s mother is married to a person who is not the biological father of the child and you wish to change the child’s surname to that of the husband.
If the mother, after her divorce from, or the death of her husband (father of child), wishes to change the child's surname to her maiden surname or to another surname she bears legally; or if she has remarried, to the surname of her new husband.
If the child is born out of wedlock but registered under the biological father's surname and the mother wishes to change the child's surname to hers.
If the minor is under the care of a guardian and the guardian wishes to change the child's surname to his/hers.
There may be other situations not mentioned above where a good and sufficient reason exists to change a minor's surname.
You are required by law to get the written consent of the biological father if the child was born in wedlock, unless the court grants a ruling overriding this requirement.
If you want your child to use the surname of your husband, who is not the biological father of the child, you must also get written consent from your husband.
You must get the written consent of both biological parents, including good and sufficient reasons, in writing, for the change.
What you should do
Go to your nearest Home Affairs office or to the South African embassy or mission if you apply abroad.
If your child is born out of wedlock and you have married a person other than your child's biological father and you wish to change the child’s surname to your husband, you must:
complete form DHA - 193 bring affidavit from the stepfather to assume his surname and marriage certificate.
Family Law Attorney
Abrahams and Gross Inc.
A:1st Floor, 56 Shortmarket Street, Cape Town, 8000
O: +27 (0) 21 422 1323
F: 086 572 8373
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