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Parliament Approves Restrictions on Changing Surnames

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Friday, April 20
The Georgian parliament has approved the package of amendments, drafted by the Ministry of Justice. The amendments will complicate processes of surname changing in order to prevent violations of the Georgia-EU visa free agreement.

The new regulations will help the Georgian government easily identify those who violate visa-free travel rules and terms while the current law allows one to change their surname 25 times or more on different grounds.

The new adjustments will allow adults to change their surnames only once.

This may happen if fatherhood is ascertained and the individual decides to take fatherís surname.

Those who changed their surnames after the Georgia-EU visa waiver came into play on March 28, 2017, will not be able to do so again, except in cases of marriage or divorce.

The Georgian officials stated that Georgian citizens used different surnames to re-enter the EU after being deported.

The Justice Ministry reported that in total, 8,339 Georgian citizens changed surnames in 2017, while in 2016 the figure was 7,175.

The government of Georgia announced changes in the law that would introduce tougher sanctions against Georgian citizens violating the Georgia-EU visa agreement in early February, after one of the regions of Germany complained about a big number of Georgian asylum seekers.