Until recently Kiyomi has been using her maiden name in Japan and Australia. We decided (for a number of reasons) that she should change her family name to mine. The procedure to do this in Japan is a bit different to Australia.
Basically you’ll need four documents:

  • Juminhyou (住民票) or Resident registration
  • Kosekitohon (戸籍謄本) or Family registration
  • Gaikokujin torokuzumi shoumeisho (外国人登録済証明書) or Foreign Registration Form (for non-Japanese spouses)
  • Uji no henko kyoka moushitatesho (氏の変更許可申立書) or Statutory Deceleration

Get/fill these forms out and send them (back) to your local family court (家庭裁判所) along with ~1400 yen postage/application stamp/shunyuinshi (収入印紙) — Amount subject to change.
The family court will then check the submitted documents and if all is order they will send back a “confirmation” type form, this is to check that you still want to go ahead the name change. When you receive this, fill it out and attach 150yen in shunyuinshi (収入印紙) “application stamps” (which are just normal stamps you can obtain from the post office) and post it back.
Once the family court gets back your confirmation and approves the name change they will issue a Kakuteishoumeisho (確定証明書) and Shinpanshotouhon (審判書謄本) which you then take to city hall to finalise the name change.
Of course those people who apply for a family name change within six months of marriage don’t have to do it this way. But for those out there who have, for one reason or another, not changed their (family) names within the months, this is what we had to do.
— David

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