In Luxembourg, certain people are allowed to legally change their first name or surname, provided they meet a series of conditions. An application to do so must be filed with the Minister of Justice (Ministre de la Justice), who will decide on whether or not to grant the name change.
Who is concerned
The procedure for changing a first name or surname is open to anyone:
- holding Luxembourg nationality, whether resident in Luxembourg or abroad; or
- recognised as stateless; or
- holding refugee or subsidiary protection status.
Any person who has obtained Luxembourg nationality through naturalisation, by option or by reclaiming their Luxembourg nationality may also apply to change their first name(s) and/or surname.
Persons of foreign nationality, even those resident or born in Luxembourg, who wish to change their first name(s) or surname, must contact the competent authorities in their country of origin.
The procedure for changing a first name or surname is free of charge.
How to proceed
Filing an application
The request must be made in writing to the Minister of Justice, either in person or through a lawyer. A form is available for this purpose.
The application must include supporting details: it must specify the circumstances which justify the name change.
The applicant must prove exceptional circumstances and important reasons.
The application must specify:
- the applicant's current first name(s) and surname;
- the first name(s) and surname they wish to be known by in the future;
- their date and place of birth;
- their nationality or nationalities;
- their usual place of residence;
- the surname and first names of their underage children, and their dates and places of birth;
- their reasons for applying.
Specific rules applying to persons under the age of 18
Applications on behalf of children under the age of 18 must be filed:
- jointly by their parents, unless one of the parents is deceased or has been stripped of parental authority; or
- by their legal guardian, when both parents are deceased or have been stripped of parental authority.
In the event of a dispute, an application may be made to the judge ruling on family matters by:
- one of the 2 parents wielding parental authority, when the 2 are in dispute and one wishes to make an application alone; or
- by the child themself, provided they are at least 12 years of age, if they are in dispute with their parents or guardian, and wish to make an application in their own right.
If the child is at least 12 years of age, their consent is required, if:
- the parent is applying to change the first name or surname on behalf of their underage child; or
- the parent's application to change their own surname could have an impact on the surname of their underage child.
Such consent is expressed by the child's signature on the application.
Applicants must attach several documents to their application:
- a full copy of their birth certificate;
- a copy of their current, valid passport or, where this is not possible, a copy of a different identity document or travel document;
- any other document which they deem pertinent.
The application must also be accompanied by the authorisation issued by the family court judge to file an application to change a first name or surname, when:
- the parents having joint parental authority are in dispute, and one of the parents has applied to the family court judge for authorisation to file an application on their own; or
- the child is at least 12 years of age, and is in dispute with their parents or guardian, and has applied to the family court judge for authorisation to file an application on their own.
The supporting documents attached to the application must be written:
- in Luxembourgish; or
- in French; or
- in German.
When the documents are not in one of these languages, the Minister of Justice may require an original translation produced by a sworn translator certified by the Supreme Court of Justice (Cour supérieure de justice) or by a foreign public authority.
The Minister of Justice may ask the applicant to produce additional documents.
When the applicant is materially unable to submit a particular document, the Minister of Justice may grant an exemption, upon a reasoned request.
The Minister of Justice may order the applicant to attend an interview with a person appointed as the Minister's representative.
Granting of the application
The Minister of Justice will decide whether or not to authorise the change of first name or surname. If granted, a copy of the ministerial decree authorising the name change is given to the applicant.
If a parent is authorised to change their surname, the ministerial decree will also state the surname of their minor children. The parent's surname change will affect their children.
The civil registrar will record the change on the applicant's birth certificate.
Updates to the National Registry of Natural Persons (Registre national des personnes physiques) are made by an officer appointed by the Minister of Justice.
Once the authorisation has been granted, the applicant must apply for a reissue, in their new name, of:
- their identity card from their commune of residence or from the Guichet.lu reception desk; and
- their passport at the Passport Office (Bureau des passeports) of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs (Ministère des Affaires étrangères et européennes – MAEE).
The identity card and passport to be replaced must be submitted to the competent administrations.
Denial of the application
The Minister of Justice may deny the application if:
- the applicant does not satisfy the legal requirements; or
- the applicant is found to have made false declarations, concealed important facts or acted fraudulently.
The ministerial decree denying the application will be sent to the applicant.
Recourse in the event of denial of the application for a name change
If the change of first name and/or surname is denied or annulled, an appeal to reverse the decision may be lodged with the Administrative Tribunal (Tribunal administratif).
Forms / Online services
National Registry of Natural Persons
Consult your personal data in the National Registry of Natural Persons
Registre national des personnes physiques
Consultez vos données inscrites au Registre national des personnes physiques (RNPP)
Nationales Register natürlicher Personen
Rufen Sie die Daten des Nationalen Registers natürlicher Personen auf
Who to contact
Arms and Security Service13, rue Erasme
Fax : (+352) 22 05 19Monday to Friday from 08.30 to 11.30 and from 14.30 to 16.00 (except at year-end and during the summer holidays)
Nationality Office13, rue Erasme
Postal address :
Fax : (+352) 26 20 27 59Monday to Friday (except on public holidays) from 8.30 to 11.30 and 14.30 to 16.00 / Special opening hours during Christmas and the summer holidays.
Passport, Visa and Legalisation Office (BPVL-MAEE)6, rue de l'Ancien Athénée
Monday to Friday from 8.30 to 16.00
Phone : (+352) 247 - 88300Fax : Visa: (+352) 22 29 07 or (+352) 46 49 80 / Passport: (+352) 22 02 91Monday to Friday from 8.30 to 11.30 and from 13.00 to 16.00
Directorate of Consular Affairs and International Cultural Relations9, rue du Palais de Justice
Phone : (+352) 247-82386
Development Cooperation Directorate6, rue de la Congrégation
Phone : (+352) 247-82351Fax : (+352) 46 38 42
Immigration Directorate – Department for Foreigners26, route d'Arlon
Postal address :
B.P. 752 L-2017 Luxembourg
Fax : (+352) 22 16 08Application for and issuance of biometric residence permits: only by appointment
Immigration Directorate – Refugee Office26, route d'Arlon
Postal address :
B.P. 752 L-2017 Luxembourg
Fax : (+352) 247-84050Service for new arrivals: Mon.-Fri. from 8.30 to 12.00 / Opening hours of the reception desks: by appointment only
Guichet.lu reception desk - ID cards and driving licences11, rue Notre-Dame
Opening hours: Monday to Friday from 08.00 to 17.00