1. Changing your gender

By law you remain your birth gender unless you apply for a Gender Recognition Certificate to change it legally.

You’ve changed your gender in the UK and have British medical evidence

You must:

  • be 18 or over
  • be diagnosed with gender dysphoria (unhappiness with your birth gender)
  • have lived as your new gender for 2 years
  • intend to live in your changed gender for the rest of your life
  • apply to the Gender Recognition Panel

If you live outside the UK and haven’t been legally recognised by an approved country or territory you’ll have to apply using this process as well.

An approved country or territory has recognised your change of gender

You must:


UK law sometimes treats men and women differently, eg women can claim the State Pension earlier. Changing your gender could affect your company or personal pension schemes.

Read ‘Guidance on benefits and pensions’.

Marriages and civil partnerships

You’ll need to end your marriage or civil partnership if you legally change your gender.

Read ‘Guidance for married people or those in civil partnerships’.

You have legal rights as a transgender person.