Identification Documents

AuthorAlly Windsor Howell
ProfessionFormer practicing lawyer from Alabama
There are several limitations to this chapter. First, it does not address youth-
speci c issues in name or gender marker changes. That is because parental
consent, often the consent of both parents, is required. Thus, this chapter
is devoted to the issues involving adults.1
In determining whether one can change his or her name or birth certi -
cate without parental involvement, one needs to know the age of majority
in one’s state of residence. The age of majority is 18 in all but four states,
Alabama2 and Nebraska3 where it is 19 and Mississippi4 and Pennsylva-
nia5 where it is 21. Of course, if the person seeking a name change is a
minor who had been judicially relieved of the disabilities of non-age, such
person’s age would not matter. Some people in the United States still do
not have and have never had a birth certi cate. Their birth, birth date, and
therefore, citizenship can be proven by alternative means. An alternative
to a birth certi cate is an entry in a family Bible, or a baptismal record
1. See also Alyson Dodi Meiselman, Katrina C. Rose & Phyllis Randolph Frye, Cause of
Action for Legal Change of Gender, 24 C  A 2d 135 (2004).
2. A. C § 26-1-1.
3. N. R. S. § 43-2101.
4. M. C A. § 1-3-21.
5. 1 P. C. S. § 1991.
Identi cation Documents
how50368_02_ch02_p017_p038.indd 17how50368_02_ch02_p017_p038.indd 17 19/03/15 11:32 AM19/03/15 11:32 AM
under common law exceptions to the hearsay rule.Also, a hospital record
of the birth would be admissible as a business record. The following agen-
cies accept such records:
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Social Security
U.S. Railroad Retirement Board7
U.S. Department of Homeland Security8
U.S. State Department9
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs10
The federal courts11 and state courts12 generally accept such records as
Changing one’s name and getting identi cation documents to match that
new name and one’s newly acknowledged gender are of vital importance
to transgender persons. Why? Because to obtain employment, one must
usually produce proof that he or she is legally in the United States, which
requires a certi ed copy of one’s birth certi cate from one of the  fty states,
the District of Columbia, or the U.S. State Department; a U.S. passport; a
Certi cate of U.S. Naturalization (Department of Homeland Security Form
N-550 or N-570); or a Permanent Resident Card, commonly known as a
greencard (Department of Homeland Security Form I-551). And if the sex
or gender designation on the proof of legal residence does not match one’s
presented gender, then he or she has been outed as being transgender and
is subject to legal denial of employment on the basis of being transgen-
dered in two-thirds of the states (see Chapter 10, “Employment”). Then
one must produce his or her Social Security card, and the name on it needs
6. See 20 C.F.R. § 416.804, 20 C.F.R. § 416.803, 20 C.F.R. § 416.1610, and 20 C.F.R.
§ 404.716.
7. See 20 C.F.R. § 219.21.
8. See 8 C.F.R. § 245a.2, 8 C.F.R. § 245a.4, 8 C.F.R. § 210.3, and 8 C.F.R. § 204.1.
9. See 22 C.F.R. § 50.5.
10. See 38 C.F.R. § 3.209, and 38 C.F.R. § 3.210.
11. See F. R. E. 803(11) (12) and 19.
12. See 29 A. J. 2d Evidence § 1248, 29 A. J. 2d Evidence § 694, and 29 A.
J. 2d Evidence § 690.
how50368_02_ch02_p017_p038.indd 18how50368_02_ch02_p017_p038.indd 18 19/03/15 11:32 AM19/03/15 11:32 AM

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT