THE EDITOR: I visited the Immigration Office in Port of Spain to renew my passport, hoping to successfully change my surname to my married name. I dutifully completed the application form, bought my original documents (passport, marriage certificate) along with copies.
I was waiting outside the office since 6.30 am, and at 7 am applicants were seated inside. After two hours, my number was finally called, only for me to be told by the Immigration officer that I am required to present an affidavit from a Commissioner of Affidavits.
I was extremely disappointed at this point because on the division’s website it lists marriage certificates as one of the supporting documents needed to change one’s surname but does not state that one needs to present all three documents listed: marriage certificate, affidavit, and a deed poll.
What further annoyed me was that several colleagues/acquaintances recently renewed their passports with only their marriage certificates. So clearly, the Immigration officers are not clear on what documents are actually required for renewing a passport.
I am sharing this complaint hoping that this inconsistency can be addressed, and if in fact an affidavit is required along with a marriage certificate for a change in surname, it should be explicitly stated on the website.
I hope someone from the Immigration Division reads this and rectifies the problem.
AMRITA MAHARAJ-DUBE via e-mail