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Name Change and Gender Marker Change

There are different procedures for changing different identity documents.

Missouri Identity Documents

Your name or gender on a Missouri birth certificate cannot be changed without a court order.  After a court order is obtained, Vital Records will issue an amended birth certificate.

Name Change: After obtaining a court order changing your name, the change of name then must be published in a legal newspaper.  

(Although a person can change his/her name by common usage in Missouri, it is increasingly difficult to get government agencies to recognize the change of name without a court order.  Therefore, obtaining a a court order is strongly advised.)

Gender Marker: Under the current Missouri statute, in order to change the gender marker on your birth certificate, you must provide evidence that you have had some type of surgical procedure.  However, a few judges in Missouri have ordered a change in the gender marker without requiring proof of physical surgery.

Identity documents also can be changed with various agencies:

U.S. Passport Office

Name Change: Requires a certified copy of the court order changing your name.  

Gender Marker Change
: Requires a letter from your physician certifying that you have had appropriate clinical treatment for gender transition.  The specific treatment that has been provided does not need to be stated.  Surgery is not required.  

Social Security

Name Change: Provide a copy of your court order to Social Security, an identity document in your prior name, and an identity document in your new name.

Gender Marker:  Social Security will accept any of the following documentation that state your current gender/sex as sufficient to change your gender in their records:
    10-year U.S. passport
    State-issued amended birth certificate
    Court order that directs recognition of new gender/sex
    Certification from your physician containing specified information

Surgery is not required for Social Security to change your  gender marker.

Updated 1/17/2015