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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 71051
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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my husbands ex-wife has recently started using his surname

Customer Question

my husbands ex-wife has recently started using his surname after 6 years of divorce. on the original marriage certificate she kept her maiden name, and during their marriage she also used her maiden name. she also used her maiden name in all the post- divorce cases. however, she is now under criminal investigation in crown courts and we discovered that she has a passport using the ex-husbands surname! we are not sure how she managed to obtain this! Can you advise on wether this is legal, as we are worried she has been charged by the police under a 'false name'
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 3 years ago.
She is perfectly free to use any name she likes unless she is doing so for an unlawful purpose.
Of course, she may be. Usually when people have several names that gives rise to the inference that they are up to no good. However, you do have to have some evidence that is their intention. The mere fact that she is now using a married name with no good reason to do so is not sufficient of itself.
I imagine she got the passport in the usual way. She is free to use a married name on the passport even if that isn't her commonly used name.
If she is using it to, for instance, defraud a person or throw the police off her scent then that would be an offence.
Can I clarify anything for you?