It should be possible to give children the last name of both parents. The cabinet has sent a bill to the House of Representatives in which this is regulated. The child may soon be given the name of one or both parents. In addition to the name they were given at birth, adopted children can also adopt the name of (one of) their adoptive parents.
The order in which the child’s surname is written is up to the parents themselves. This choice only applies to the first child, the bill states. If people who are named after both parents also have a child themselves, at most two names can be passed on. This is to prevent the names from becoming too long. This also applies to adopted children. An exception is made for people who already have a plural surname. It may be passed on in its entirety.
The possibility of giving a double surname (formally: a combined surname) was a wish of the House of Representatives, and not of the outgoing Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker. The possibility will still arise because research has shown that 32 percent of parents would like to, he announced in February.
The ministry cites a number of examples for the new names. If the parents are called De Vries and Willems, they will soon have four options. They can name their child De Vries or Willems, or De Vries Willems or Willems de Vries. If someone with the combined name, such as Willems de Vries, has children with someone who also has a combined name, even ten surnames are possible for those children.
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