Child's Name

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The other parent of my child has not been involved since birth but our child has their last name. How do I change this?

    If you have sole decision-making responsibility over your child you can apply to Vital Statistics to change the name of your child without the other parent’s consent. However, you must provide notice to that parent and they can apply to court to oppose the name change. If you share decision-making responsibility over your child, the other parent must consent to the name change. In this case, you may need to consult with a lawyer for help with filing in court to get the name change without that parent’s consent. The Vital Statistics Agency can be contacted at (204) 945-3701, 1-866-949-9296, or .

  • Will the father automatically be recognized as the birth father on the birth certificate?

    The father will be legally recognized on the birth certificate only if:

      • Both parents sign the joint request to acknowledge the father and consent to his information being included on the birth registration form, or
      • Either parent gets a Court Order saying he is the father.
  • Whose last name should my baby have?

    The law in Manitoba places few limits on parents’ ability to name a child. It only requires that the child’s birth be registered with both a given name and a surname, made up of the letters a to z, accents from the English or French languages and hyphens and apostrophes.

    The law does not require a child to have the father’s last name. This may be particularly important to single mothers who want their child to have the same surname as them. Sometimes parents decide to give their children both their last names.

    If the mother is not married to the child’s father, information about the father can only be included on the birth registration if the parents complete a joint written request and submit it to Vital Statistics.