Civil Status Law Must Allow a Third Gender Option (Germany)

The Federal Constitutional Court of Germany recently ruled “that binary gender designations violated the right to privacy.” The court ordered lawmakers to “create a third gender category for people who do not identify as either male or female or were born with ambiguous sexual traits” or “dispense with gender altogether in public documents” by the end of 2018.

This decision comes in the case of a German citizen identified only as Vanja, who filed a constitutional complaint alleging a violation of the general right of personality and discrimination based on gender following a denied request to replace “female” on Vanja’s birth certificate with “inter/diverse.”

“The assignment to a gender is of paramount importance for individual identity; it typically occupies a key position both in the self-image of a person and how the person is perceived by others,” the court found. “It also protects the sexual identity of those persons who are neither male nor female.”

Germany Must Allow Third Gender Category, Court Rules — New York Times