Home Affairs officials must ask spouses about name change

JOHANNESBURG – Home Affairs will soon make it compulsory for marriage officers to ask married women whether or not they want a surname change.

The department was recently challenged after a married woman had her maiden name changed without her consent.

The law gives married women three options: Keeping their maiden name, opting for a double-barrel surname or taking their husband’s surname.

But one woman only discovered her name had been change when she went to register for the recent local government elections.

“I was ushered into the same queue as my husband. His surname begins with a D and mines with a W,” said Sarah Wild.

“When I went to the woman to tick me off on the voter’s roll, she had the wrong name and it didn’t match my ID.