Expert's certificate for transgenders to lapse

At the moment, transgender persons require an expert's certificate to change the sex on their birth certificate. The certificate will now lapse, simplifying the current procedure. This information emerged from a legislative proposal by Minister for Legal Protection Sander Dekker, which was submitted for online consultation today.

The future procedure will be a two-step process. First, people must lodge an application to change their registered sex. They must confirm this notification at the municipal authority desk after a minimum of four and a maximum of twelve weeks, following which the civil registrar will amend the birth certificate. To do so, the transgender person will be able in future to visit the civil registrar of his residence as well as his place of birth. This process will save travel expenses and time.

The legislative amendment results from an evaluation of the current Transgender Act (Transgenderwet) and addresses practical objections to the expert's certificate. In the view of transgender persons and interest groups, the expert's certificate violates their right to self-determination. They also have practical objections, including the costs associated with the certificate.

Dekker:

‘It is the aim of the government to further the emancipation of transgender persons. For this purpose, it will be made easier to change the sex on the birth certificate in future. Young people aged under 16 will also be able to do so.’
 

Dekker's proposal to drop the current age limit will give young people aged under 16 the right to lodge an application with the court to change their registered sex as well in future. The argument is that some young people choose to be known by another gender before they reach the age of 16. Such people may feel greatly restricted by the divide between their registered sex and perceived gender identity; for example, in light of compulsory identification and school certificates to be obtained.