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Changing middle name on birth certificate without father's permission

(39 Posts)
Rvrob22 Sun 05-Mar-17 22:32:18

I left my controlling and emotionally abusive husband when my son was 3 weeks old, he is now 12 weeks old. My husband didn't care for or support me during pregnancy and bullied me into our son's name. He has also had very little interest in our son and only sees him as a trophy and a way to win me back (NOT happening!!!) My husband is Tunisian and said we had to have a traditional Tunisian middle name which would be [first name] Ben [father's name] [surname]. He refused to talk to me for a week until I agreed.

Of everything he did in our relationship, this is my biggest regret that I never got to chose our son's name but I am the one looking after him. He doesn't provide financially and has been told by the court he can only have 2 hours supervised visit a week - which he hasn't asked for more.

Our son is called Malik Ben Mokhles - which I feel is completely Tunisian and takes none of my English culture and heritage into account. I worry if people saw his name they wouldnt expect me to be his mother. I have looked into changing DS name and I know I can't change his surname without my husband's permission - which I will never get, but I have read you can change the forenames up to 12 months after registering the birth and can't see anything about needing the father's permission. I rang up the registry office and they sent me the form to change his name and as far as I can see you don't need the father's permission. I just wondered if anyone knew whether this was correct and I could change my son's name?? I want him to be Malik George and I will unofficially use my surname.


Sugarpiehoneyeye Mon 06-Mar-17 08:04:24

I would leave his name as it it OP.
Malik Ben Mokhles and Malik George Mokhles, still sound very Tunisian.
If you were to change the names around, Ben Malik Mokhles, or George Malik Mokhles, that would be understandable. British middle names are rarely used.
You do sound under a lot of pressure at the moment, and your little baby is very new.
You have plenty of time to think this over.

Rvrob22 Mon 06-Mar-17 09:13:27

Thanks, he would just be Malik George, there would be no Ben Mokhles. In arabic the Ben Mokhles means 'son of Mokhles', which is the part I'd get rid of!

Gallavich Mon 06-Mar-17 12:42:21

Just go for it.

InTheDessert Mon 06-Mar-17 13:01:07

Are you going to call your son Malik or George? Maybe consider changing the order too.

I'd also consider putting your surname in. So if you are Ms Smith, call your son Malik George Smith [Surname]
If the paperwork says no father's permission needed, do it. No harm in trying.

Sugarpiehoneyeye Mon 06-Mar-17 17:26:34

Now I get it OP 🤔
In that case, yes, go for it !
Hope it all goes smoothly.

user1475480824 Mon 06-Mar-17 17:47:39

my ex-husband is a moroccan berber and wanted to call our son a name that in tamazight language means freedom (from arabic colonization). the name isn't too horrible in itself but i refused to use it because of it being politically loaded and our son growing up in the uk so i just gave him a ordinary name widely used in this country. ex has never once called our son by his name and always refers to him by the berber name. i don't know what my son will think about that when he's old enough to understand but if it was me i wouldn't want calling by a name that's not my own even if i liked it.
so, just saying you're not alone with a name disagreement with an ex from that region

JujuMonster Mon 06-Mar-17 18:04:32

I'd do it and also add your surname in, even if it's just as a middle name.

Just to play devils advocate, if your husband found out before 12 months was up, would he be able to change your sons name without telling you?

Rvrob22 Mon 06-Mar-17 20:29:11

JujuMonster- no, you can only change the name once so if/when he finds out there's little he could do except for a deed poll which I wouldn't agree to.

Allthebestnamesareused Mon 06-Mar-17 20:34:04

I think George is her surname

auntym Mon 06-Mar-17 21:38:49

Go for it and we'll done for getting away.

Sugarpiehoneyeye Mon 06-Mar-17 21:58:24

Good luck OP, I think you are doing the right thing.

JujuMonster Tue 07-Mar-17 14:50:27

In that case absolutely, go for it, and well done on getting away

ClaryIsTheBest Wed 08-Mar-17 07:35:56

Yes, I agree. Well done for getting away.

I personally think adding your last name somewhere in there would be a good idea as well.

George "Smith" Mokhles, for example?

sashh Wed 08-Mar-17 07:49:51

Go for it.

Also many people go by names that are not anywhere near their birth names. Many many Chinese people in the UK have an English nick name or they have both English and Chinese names.

Sugarpiehoneyeye Wed 08-Mar-17 08:51:08

CLARYLS, George is the surname. I initially, thought the same as you. 😄

Gallavich Wed 08-Mar-17 09:57:15

George isn't the surname, it's the middle name to replace Ben Mokhles. She hasn't given us his surname

IckleWicklePumperNickle Wed 08-Mar-17 10:10:19

Change his whole name. He doesn't want anything to do with your son. So he shouldn't have any say in a his name at all.

Sugarpiehoneyeye Wed 08-Mar-17 16:25:34

😂😂😂 Oh dear, one fine day, I'll get it right Gallavich.
Sorry CLARYLS ! 😊

ClaryIsTheBest Wed 08-Mar-17 17:27:53


That can happen to all of us.

What I'm unsure of is this... is Mokhles the 3rd name or the surname?

However, I definitely agree with ickle. Being saddled with the surname of a person that doesn't want you is already more than enough imo. No need to keep any part of the name said person insisted on. Unless you actually like Malik, of course.

George however is a lovely name smile George "your name" last name (=Mokhles)?

Rvrob22 Wed 08-Mar-17 17:31:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ClaryIsTheBest Wed 08-Mar-17 17:49:55

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

WafflingVersatile Wed 08-Mar-17 17:57:06

I work in a school and students call themselves all sorts. We have record of their legal names, but we address them by different first names and preferred surnames. So I wouldn't worry on that count.

Girlsinthegarden Thu 09-Mar-17 11:23:27

Do you need written permission for the surname? I'd add your surname to it and then just use that every day. He'd have to go to court to change it back and it would most likely go in your favour because both surnames are still in there (if he even bothered).

CreamCrackerundertheSettee Thu 09-Mar-17 11:33:09

I understand your reasons OP but as someone who had their surname changed as a child I'd think twice.

My dad died and my mum remarried- I was Smith and then unofficially used Jones. (Names changed obviously!). It is an administrative nightmare with school certificates in Jones but birth certificate in Smith. Getting a passport took forever as I wasn't known to anyone as Smith. Even more confusing my mum added Smith to my middle names further complicating it.

I changed my name on marriage just to leave the whole debacle behind! Even so it follows me around as Smith is included in my middles names on some ID.

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