How to Change Your Name AND Gender (Adult)

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How-to Guide to Changing Your Name AND Gender

Important! You do not need a court ordered recognition of gender change to change your California driver's license, social security card, or U.S. passport. You also do not need a court order to have a new birth certificate issued reflecting a change of gender (for California birth records); you can go directly to the State Registrar office and follow the process there. If you were born outside of California, you may want to get a court ordered recognition of gender change to amend your birth certificate in your birth state. Find out more at ID Please - A guide to Changing California and Federal Identity Documents to Match Your Gender Identity. You DO need a court order for a change of name. If you need to change your name AND gender, you can follow the instructions below, or you can instead change your gender with the State Registrar (without a court order) and separately get a court order for a name change only. To do that, visit our name change section.

Generally, to get a court order changing your name AND recognizing a change of gender, follow these steps:

  1. Fill out your court forms
    You have two options to fill out your forms:
    1. Complete your forms online.

    2. Download and fill out the forms listed below:
      • Petition for Change of Name, Recognition of Change of Gender, and Issuance of New Birth Certificate (Form NC-200) and Attachment to Petition for Change of Name (Form NC-110),
      • Order to Show Cause for Change of Name to Conform to Gender Identity (Form NC-125 / NC-225), and
      • Civil Case Cover Sheet (Form CM-010).
      • Decree Changing Name and Order Recognizing Change of Gender and for Issuance of New Birth Certificate (Form NC-230). (Complete the boxes at the top and item 1).

    Some courts also require you to fill out local forms to ask for a name change, like a criminal background information form. Ask your local court clerk if there are local forms you have to fill out. Some courts also have forms on their websites. Find your local court’s website. Make sure to keep copies of any local forms you fill out.

  2. Have your forms reviewed
    If your court's family law facilitator or self-help center helps people with name and gender change recognition cases, ask them to review your paperwork. They can make sure you filled it out properly before you move ahead with your case.

  3. Make 1 copy of all your forms

  4. File your forms with the court clerk
    File all the forms and copies in the superior court in the county where you live. The clerk will stamp your forms “Filed,” keep the original, and return the copies to you.  You will have to pay a filing fee. Find out how much the filing fee is for a first petition (sometimes called a “first appearance” or “first papers”). If you cannot afford the fee, you can ask for a fee waiver.

    After you file the forms with the superior court, the court will issue the Order to Show Cause for Change of Name to Conform to Gender Identity (Form NC-125 / NC-225). This order will direct any person who objects to the name change to file a good cause objection within six weeks from the date of the order.

  5. Go to your court hearing, if necessary
    If no good cause objection is filed within six weeks, the court will grant the request without a hearing.

    If an objection is filed and a hearing is set, you will be sent a notice of the court date. Go to court on your court date and take a copy of the papers you filed, along with the Decree Changing Name and Order Recognizing Change of Gender and for Issuance of New Birth Certificate (Form NC-230) for the judge to sign.

  6. Get your Decree Changing Name and Gender from the court
    If the judge approves your request for a change of name and gender, the judge will sign the Decree Changing Name and Order Recognizing Change of Gender and for Issuance of New Birth Certificate (Form NC-230). Once you get your signed decree, get a certified copy from the court clerk. You will need this to change your name on your legal documents, including your birth certificate and other government-issued identification like your driver’s license. Click for information on changing your driver’s license.

  7. Changing your birth certificate.
    If you were born in California, and you want to change your birth certificate to reflect your changed gender, take the court order to the State Registrar within 30 days and pay the applicable fee. More information about changing your birth certificate here.