Law Number : 2525

Date of Adoption : June 21,1934

Date and No. of Publication in the Official Gazette : July 2,1934 - 2741

[1] This translation which has been made by myself is unofficial and for information purposes only. Read this page first, please. Click "SOYADI KANUNU" for full Turkish text of the Law.


Article 1 – Every Turkish citizen shall be obliged to carry a surname other than his or her essential name.


Article 2 – In articulation, in writing and in signing, essential name shall be used in front; surname, in the end.


Article 3 – There shall not be used surnames that are names of rank and official position, tribe and foreign race and nation and that are inappropriate to the general decency or are disgusting or ridiculous.


Article 4 – The duty and right of choosing a surname shall be belonged to the husband who is the head of the marriage union.

(Repealed first sentence: by the decision of the Constitutional Court dated December 8,2011 and Docket No: 2010/119, Decree No: 2011/165.) If the husband is dead and his wife is not married, or the husband is under guardianship because of mental illness and mental weakness and marriage is also continuing, this right and duty shall be of the wife.

If the wife has got married after her husband’s death or the husband has been taken under guardianship for the reasons mentioned in the previous paragraph and the marriage has also ended, this right and duty shall be belonged to the nearest male person to the child from among his or her relatives by blood who are coming from his or her father’s lineage and who is the oldest one of them.


Article 5 – Any major person who has discretion is free to choose his or her surname.

There shall be chosen the name of a person who has been taken under guardianship because of mental illness or mental weakness by his or her father, if he is non-existent by his or her mother, if she is non-existent either, by his or her guardian.


Article 6 – Upon a writ issued by the highest civil official, the Public Prosecutor may demand from the court the persons who use surnames incongrously to the ban stated in the Article 3 to change these names and the names which tells relation with the persons who acquired fame in history not to be used by asserting the opposite.

Titles which have been specified by law are reserved.


Article 7 – Both those who do not have surname and those who want to change their surnames shall declare so as to be recorded to the state registers in a way to be determined by the Government within two years starting from the date of publication of this Law. Any kind of document to be given for this work shall be exempt from the tax stamp.


Article 8 – The authority to settle the disputes in the matters of choosing surname and to give name to the persons who have not chosen surname by themselves and to the children whose mothers and fathers are not certain and to decide whether a name is suitable to the form which the law prescribed or not, shall belong to the highest civil official of the place where the main register is maintained.


Article 9 – Governors and district governors are authorized to employ the officers they regarded suitable in the other State departments and in the job of filling surnames into the state registers and birth certificates until the work terminates.


Article 10 – Those who want to change their surnames after the period specified by this law passed shall be subject to the provisions that are in this meaning of the Turkish Civil Code.


Article 11 – There may be imposed forfeiture of pay for one week by district governors and for fifteen days by governors about the officers of whom have been seen negligence in the work of writing surnames into the state registers and birth certificates. These decisions are definite and are deducted from the first salary to be paid.


Article 12 – There shall be taken from five liras to fifteen light fine from the persons who have not declared their surnames within the time period specified by the law and from ten liras to fifty from each one of the headmen and councillors and those who have been commissioned by the municipalities of whom have been seen negligence in duty to be given for this work by the Government. These fines are imposed by the decisions of local government boards and become definite by the approval of the governor or district governors.


Article 13 – A Regulation shall be made indicating the ways of applying this law.


Article 14 – This law shall enter into force six months after the date of its publication.


Article 15 – The Minister of the Internal Affairs shall be commissioned to fulfill the provisions of this law.


LAST UPDATE: June 11,2017