Intersex (Legal gender recognition)

(Application no. 40296/16), 14 November 2017 

Find Court’s communication here.

Find Court’s decision here. (non-exhaustion of domestic remedies)

  • The applicant, an intersex person, was registered as male, but identifying herself as female. She complains of the absence of any procedure in Ukraine for changing gender and name records for intersex persons.
  • ILGA-Europe together with OII Europe submitted the following:
    • There is lack of awareness about intersex people in Ukraine and the issues they face in their everyday lives. This results in a lack of non-pathologising information on intersex and lack of administrative procedures to reflect the person’s gender identity which may be wrongfully assigned after birth.  As a result, intersex people are wrongfully precluded from name change and legal recognition procedures that are available to trans people. 
    • According to the ECtHR, imposing a restriction on one’s right to bear or change a name without justified and relevant reasons is incompatible with the purpose of Article 8, which is to protect individuals’ self-determination and personal development. Therefore, restrictions on name change should be analysed very critically and even more so where they are seeking to prevent conformation with an individual’s gender identity.
    • International and European bodies have emphasized the need for quick, transparent and accessible legal gender recognition and name change procedures based on the principle of self-determination.  There is a growing international consensus at the national, European and international level of the need to recognise and protect their rights.

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