1. Figure out if you’re eligible
Question & AnswerHow do I reclaim my traditional Indigenous name?
To reclaim your traditional name in Ontario as an adult, you need to:
- be a residential school survivor, or a family member of a residential school survivor,
- be 18 years or older, or have your parent's consent if you're 16 or 17, and
- have lived in Ontario with a permanent residential address for 12 months.
If you were away from Ontario in the past 12 months, it must have only been for a short time.
You need a person to confirm that you've lived in Ontario for the last 12 months. This person is called a guarantor. Your guarantor must also live in Ontario.
Part 4 of the application form has a list of people who can be a guarantor, including:
- Chiefs of Indian bands
- principals of elementary and secondary schools
- lawyers or paralegals
- licensed medical practitioners
- people who can legally perform weddings
If you cannot find anyone from the list to be your guarantor, you can ask an adult who:
- is not a relative,
- has known you for at least 5 years, and
- knows that you've lived in in Ontario for the past 12 months.
If you want to reclaim your child's name, they must:
- be 17 or younger
- have lived in Ontario with a permanent residential address for the past 12 months
- not be
- agree to the name change if they're 12 years or older
- not be part of a or that does not allow them to change their name
If a child is under a year old, they must have lived in Ontario since birth.