Swedes Change Names to Stand Out

More Swedes are choosing to have a name change. Only this year more than 4000 people have applied to change their names at the Swedish patent and Registration Office (PRV). According to Swedish Newspaper Dagens Nyheter, to create a double-barrel name or to change the spelling of one’s family name is the most popular.

According to PRV there has been a massive increase over the last ten years and they are expecting an even higher number this year. A new trend is for newly weds to create a new name altogether, while others want to change to a name that is more Swedish, or one that rings of nobility. Another usual request is to change the spelling. An ordinary Swedish name like Svensson then becomes the more original Svenzon.

At the PRV they believe that the name-changing trend will continue in the future. But it isn’t possible to change your name to whatever you want. In Sweden you can’t name yourself or your children something that may cause offence. Nor can you have a family name as your Christian name. Using the name of a company, a book, or a place is also out of the question– so there will be no Ikeas, Bibles or Gothenburgs walking around in Sweden.