Germany presents plan to make changing gender easier

FILE PHOTO: German Justice Minister Marco Buschmann addresses the media during a news conference on key points of the capital markets modernisation law, in Berlin, Germany June 29, 2022. REUTERS/Michele Tantussi/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany will cut the red tape required for changing a person's name and gender under a plan presented by the government on Thursday that seeks to abolish a controversial 1980 law regulating the process.

Transgender, intersex and non-binary individuals will in future be able to change their details with a visit to their local civil registry office, according to a paper setting out the planned legislation.

Such individuals would no longer have to provide a medical certificate or go through an often lengthy and expensive court process in which the person's gender is assessed by two experts and a judge, as is currently required.

"The current law treats those affected as if they are sick. There is no justification for this," Justice Minister Marco Buschmann said in a statement.

Families minister Lisa Paus described the current Transexual Law as "degrading" and said: "We will now finally abolish it and replace it with a modern self-determination law."

In a bid to protect young people, the new legislation would allow individuals aged 14 and over to register a new name and gender themselves, but a court could overrule that change in cases where the parents do not support it.

(Reporting by Rachel More; Editing by Tomasz Janowski)

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