The effects of divorce on your family name

 

  • The principle

 

Under Swiss law, divorce has no automatic effect on the surname of former spouses/registered partners.

 

However, Art. 199 of the Civil Code provides that a spouse/registered partner who has changed his or her name at the time of the marriage/registered partnership may apply to the Civil Registry Officer to revert to his or her unmarried name once the divorce decree has come into force.

 

This is a relatively simple, quick and inexpensive procedure (between CHF 105 and CHF 200). 

 

Please note, however, that if you are a foreign national, the legal system of your country of origin applies, not that of Switzerland.

  • The children

 

Please note that your change of name will have no effect on your children’s names. They will keep the surname they chose at the time of birth. 

 

If they wish to change their name, they will have to make a request in person. 

  • How do I do it?

 

Such a request can be made at any time to the registry office of your place of residence. 

  • Some remarks

 

Do not forget to renew your official documents and to inform the various administrative authorities once the name change has occurred.

 

Questions & Answers 

  1. How can I get my family name back as a single person ?
  2. What steps do I need to take to recover my single surname?
  3. Will my children be affected by my recovery of my single surname ?
  4. I am of foreign origin, am I subject to Swiss regulations on the right to a name ?

 

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