I've been asked by a friend if I'll sign their deed poll as a witness. They're trans and are changing their name as part of their transition. I've known them for 10+ years. Are there any legal aspects I need to be aware of before I sign this? If I'm asked to prove that we've known each other for 10 years I'd have difficulty proving it (it's not like friendships come with contracts!), and I don't live locally so if I'm asked to present myself somewhere I probably won't be able to. I've read the advice on the deed poll office website but didn't see anything to be concerned about - we're both British nationals, so the stuff about possibly needing a solicitor present I don't think applies? Just want to be sure I'm not missing anything before I put pen to paper

1 Answer 1


Signing as a witness binds you to nothing. Do not sign if you do not qualify as a witness (e.g. Time known, occupation) but otherwise go for it.

It is unlikely that anyone would check your bona-fifes but if they did a statutory declaration would probably be satisfactory.

Remember, the point of witnessing is to show the form was actually signed by the person.

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