If you wish to have your true gender legally recognised in the UK, you can apply to the Gender Recognition Panel (GRP) for a Gender Recognition Certificate (GRC). Your birth certificate will then be re-issued confirming your true gender.
To grant a GRC, the panel must be satisfied that you:
Gender reassignment surgery is not a requirement to obtain a GRC in the UK.
You need to show that you have lived for two years in your true gender. In practice the panel usually requires three or four items of evidence, which might include things like your passport, rent book, wage slips or benefit book if they show that you have been living in your true gender for two years.
You must also provide the panel with two medical reports to confirm you have or have had gender dysphoria. They should be:
Your application to the GRP must include a ‘statutory declaration’ as to whether you are married or in a civil partnership and, if so, where the ceremony took place.
Since the passing of the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, marriage is available to both same-sex and different-sex couples. However, if you are married and you transition, your spouse must give consent before a full certificate can be issued. If your spouse withholds consent then your marriage must be ended, either by divorce or annulment, before you can be issued with a full certificate. If your spouse gives consent, then your marriage can continue (converting from a same-sex marriage to a different-sex marriage, or vice versa) and you can be granted a full certificate.
Unlike marriage, UK civil partnership is not available to both same-sex and different-sex couples: UK law only permits same-sex couples to enter into a civil partnership. If you are in a civil partnership and going through a transition, this means that you must either bring your civil partnership to an end or convert it to a marriage before you can be issued with a full certificate.
In order to apply for a GRC you must:
Once your application has been received, it will be assigned a member of the team who may contact you for any further information or documentation needed.
Your application with then be passed to a GRP which will comprise a legal or a legal and medical panel member, depending on the type of application you are making. Applications are generally considered on the papers and the Panel may request further information or evidence from you at this stage.
Once the Panel has made a decision this will be sent to you, with your GRC if you have been successful. If your application has been unsuccessful reasons will be provided by the GRP.
If you are granted a full GRC, and have a UK birth entry, the panel will send a full copy of the GRC to the relevant register office as soon as it is issued. A new entry will then be made in the Gender Recognition Register which will be used by the registrar to produce a new birth certificate for you.
A free short birth certificate will then be sent to you by post together with information about how to purchase new full certificates (also showing your parents’ names).
You will also need to inform the relevant authorities and certain government departments about your change of gender – including the HMRC and any organisation that pays you a pension, benefits or tax credits.