Changing forename

Everyone must have at least one and no more than four forenames. Names combined with a hyphen are also considered as one name.  

You can change your forename in Finland, if  

  • you live in Finland and your data has been entered in the Finnish Population Information System. 
  • you are a Finnish citizen and live abroad outside Norway, Sweden and Denmark. If you live in Norway, Sweden or Denmark and would like to change your name, please contact the authorities in your country of residence. 

You can apply for a change of forename with us when you want to 

  • change your forenames 
  • change the order of your forenames 
  • add or remove forenames 
  • add or remove a hyphen in your forename. 

The initial letter in the name must be a capital and the other letters cannot be capitals (for example, Anne and Riitta-Liisa will be accepted, but not ANNE or Riitta-liisa). When writing the name on the application, remember to make a clear distinction between the letters that should be in upper case and those that should be in lower case. 

Change of name abroad 

You do not need to submit an application for a name change to us if you have had your forename changed by a decision of the authorities of another country. Instead, you can ask us to record your new name free of charge. 

How to notify us of a name that has been changed abroad 

Notification and change of your child's name 

If your child's name has not yet been recorded in the Population Information System, it is a matter of notification of the child's personal details. Instead of submitting an application for a name change, notify us of the personal details of your child according to the instructions on a different page.  

The name of a minor child entered in the Population Information System can be changed using the instructions on this page. 

How we process your application 

1. Submitting the application 

Use the instructions below to apply.  

We will not send a separate message to acknowledge receipt of your application. 

2. Processing the application 

We will not start processing your application until you have paid the processing fee. We will process the applications in the order we have received them. Applications that have been paid directly in connection with applying may therefore progress faster. Please note! The fee will not be returned even if you cancel your application, or we reject the application. 

We may ask you to provide additional information about the name you would like to adopt or any missing documents. Sometimes we also request an opinion from the Names Board. In that case, it will take longer to process your application.  

Unfortunately, you will not be able to monitor the progress of your application. However, you can find the average processing time on this page.  

3. Resolution of the case 

Once we have processed your application, you will receive a written decision by post, email or Suomi.fi Messages if you use the service. Your new name will be entered into the Population Information System on the day the decision is made.  

After the name has been changed, you will automatically receive a new Kela card in the post. However, you will have to renew your passport, electronic ID card and driving licence in your new name yourself.  

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

Do the following

Select the most suitable way for you to submit an application for a name change:

1. Electronic name change service

You can only submit an application for yourself in our electronic service if you live permanently in mainland Finland and are an adult.  

Strong identification is required for using the service. Please also note that the processing fee is paid when submitting the application.

Name change service

2. Online form

Use the online form to submit your application, if  

  • you are a minor and you have online banking IDs 
  • you are applying for a name change for your minor child 
  • you are applying for a change of name for several family members at the same time 
  • you cannot submit an application in the electronic name change service for any other reason.  

Strong identification is required for using the service.

We will send you the invoice by post to your home address or Suomi.fi Messages if you have enabled it. We will process your application after payment. The processing fee will be charged for each person even if you use one form to apply for the change of forename for several persons. 

If consent is required for the application, the person giving consent may also sign this form.  

If any of the signatures required for the application are missing, we will request them separately. The application can be processed faster if all required signatures are already there. You can also submit your consent for a change of name separately using the consent form (in Finnish) or e-mail.  

Applying for name change on online form

3. Downloadable form

You can also use a printable online form to submit the application. Save the form on your computer before filling it out. 

Send the filled-in form to us with all the signatures by post to the following address: Digital and Population Data Services Agency, P.O. Box 1003, 00531 Helsinki, or use encrypted e-mail. You will then receive the invoice by post to your home address or Suomi.fi Messages if you have enabled it. 

Applying for a name change using a form

4. Using our services at a service location

If necessary, you can fill in the application by visiting one of our agency’s service locations. However, we recommend that you primarily fill in the application online. Visiting a service location in person does not speed up the processing of the application. 

Addresses of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency's service locations

Price

The processing fee for the application for a change of forename is EUR 55 per change of name or per person applying for it.

If you do not pay the processing fee when you submit the application, we will send you the invoice separately in Suomi.fi Messages or by post. We will not process your application until you have paid the processing fee.

Processing times

Changing forename

If you have submitted the application in the electronic name change service, the processing time is 6-10 weeks. The processing time for other applications depends on how quickly you pay the application fee. In that case, the processing time is 1-5 months. The processing may take longer if we request an additional explanation from you or a statement from the Names Board.

Changing surname

When you are applying for a surname that you have previously used

If you have submitted the application in the electronic name change service, the processing time is 6-10 weeks. The processing time for other applications depends on how quickly you pay the application fee. In that case, the processing will take 1-5 months. The processing may take longer if we request an additional explanation from you for your application.

When you are applying for a surname that you have not used previously

The average processing time is currently 1-5 months. The processing time depends on how quickly you pay the application fee and provide the required documents. The processing may take longer if we request a statement from the Names Board.

Changing surname upon marriage 

You can ask our marriage experts about the processing times.

Notification of a child´s name

You can find the processing times on our Notification of a child´s name page.

Frequently asked questions

Contact us

You can manage forename- and surname-related matters with us in the following ways:

1. Email

Contact us primarily by email.

Use secure mail to send the email so that your information is encrypted. Select [email protected] as the recipient in the secure mail. In your message, enter at least your personal data and the matter that your message is about.

You can find the average processing times on our website. 

Please note! When you are notifying a child’s names or the child's other information, select [email protected] as the recipient of the secure mail. Read more about notification of a child's name.

Send secure email

2. Telephone

You can also contact us by phone on weekdays between 9.00 and 12.00. Our telephone number is 0295 539 080.

You can find the average processing times on our website. 

3. Posting the documents

You can also post the required documents to us to the following address: the Digital and Population Data Services Agency, P.O. Box 1003, 00531 Helsinki, Finland

4. Using our services at a service location

If you cannot handle the matter in another way, you may book an appointment at one of our service locations. However, applications for a change of name do not require you to visit the service location in person and visiting a service location in person does not speed up the processing of your application. 

Service locations

Book an appointment

Acts related to the matter