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Rhode Island

Welcome to our one-stop hub for name and gender change information. Find out how to get a legal name change where you live and update your name/gender on state and federal IDs and records.

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Last updated August 2018

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

Federal IDs and Records:

Rhode Island Name Change Laws

To obtain a legal name change in Rhode Island, an applicant must submit a notarized name change petition to the court. Along with the petition, the applicant must submit a certified copy of their birth certificate and a copy of their Bureau of Criminal Identification records (follow the instructions for state background checks here). You can request waiver of the publication requirement or publish notice of the hearing in a local newspaper once a week for two weeks (use this form). The advertising requirements may differ by county. (R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. §§ 33-22-11 & 33-22-28).

Rhode Island Drivers License Policy & Procedures

In order to update name and/or gender on a Rhode Island ID, the applicant must first change name with the Social Security Administration, then submit (1) a new application for an ID, (2) a document demonstrating the name change (if applicable), such as a birth certificate, passport, or court order, and (3) a Gender Designation Form signed by a licensed provider certifying the applicant's gender identity. The Rhode Island Department of Motor Vehicles addresses name change here.

Rhode Island Birth Certificate Laws

The Rhode Island Department of Health will issue an amended birth certificate when an "individual has undergone surgical and/or hormonal treatment based on contemporary clinical standards and/or other treatment appropriate for the individual for the purpose of gender transition based on contemporary clinical standards." R23-3-VR. The registrar will issue an amended certificate that does not specify what was changed but does show that it has been amended.

To apply for an amended birth certificate the applicant should submit:

  1. A birth certificate request form
  2. An affidavit by the registrant if of legal age, and if not by the registrant's parent(s), legal guardian(s) or legal representative;
  3. An affidavit by a physician, certified nurse practitioner, or physician's assistant who has treated or evaluated the individual, stating that either the "individual has undergone surgical and/or hormonal treatment based on contemporary clinical standards and/or other treatment appropriate for the individual for the purpose of gender transition based on contemporary clinical standards, or (ii) The individual has an intersex condition, and that in the physician’s ... professional opinion, the individual’s sex designation should be changed;"
  4. The court order for the name change if applicable, and
  5. Payment of any applicable fees.

For information on the Rhode Island Department of Health website click here.

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