District Of Columbia | National Center for Transgender Equality

ID Documents Center


District Of Columbia

Welcome to our one-stop hub for name and gender change information. Find out how to update your name and gender on state and federal IDs and records. 

COVID-19 disruptions: Due to the current COVID-19 public health crisis, many courts and government offices are temporarily closed or operating for emergency business only; contact the office nearest you for details. You may unfortunately experience delays in getting a response from state or federal government agencies or in the processing of your name or gender marker change requests as a result. For your safety and the safety of others you should not travel to any government office at this time. You should keep dated copies of any materials you submit by mail or electronically. We understand this is a hardship for many, and we encourage you to reach out for support if you are distressed.

Not sure where to start? Here's a quick overview.

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Last updated May 2020

Name Change, Driver's License & Birth Certificate Policies in:

Federal IDs and Records:

District Of Columbia Name Change Laws

To obtain a legal name change in the District of Columbia, an applicant must submit a petition to the court and notify creditors and other interested parties of the upcoming name change via certified mail. No publication is required. (DC ST §§16-2501 to 16-2503). 

For instructions on legal name changes for minors under 18 in the District of Columbia, see NCTE's Name Changes for Minors in the District of Columbia resource.

District Of Columbia Drivers License Policy & Procedures

The District of Columbia offers three options for gender markers: M (male), F (female), or X (unspecified/other). Applicants self-select the option that best fits them and do not need a providers signature.

In order to update name and/or gender on a District of Columbia ID, the applicant must submit to the DMV:

  • A DC Driver's License or Identification Card Application, indicating Male, Female, or Unspecified
  • Appropriate documentation of identity, residency, ability to drive, etc (use the Document Verification Guide available online)
  • If changing the legal name, a court order for name change (please note applicant must change their legal name with Social Security at least 24 hours BEFORE the DMV)
  • If changing the gender marker, a Gender Designation Form indicating M, F, or X, signed by the applicant
  • Appropriate fee ($48 for renewal, $20 for duplicate/changed information)

The District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles addresses name changes here.

District Of Columbia Birth Certificate Laws

The District of Columbia Department of Health will amend the gender on a birth certificate upon receipt of:

  1. Birth Certificate Gender Designation Application Form, and
  2. Statement of Licensed Healthcare Provider Certifying the Applicant's Gender Change, signed by a licensed provider, attesting that the individual "has undergone surgical, hormonal or other treatment appropriate for the individual for the purpose of gender transition based on contemporary medical standards or the individual has an intersex condition." 

D.C. Code § 7-210. Both forms are available here.

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