Indiana name change for transgender people
Disclaimer: This is legal talk, not legal advice. Laws vary by state, and
some of the information discussed on this page may not be applicable in your
case. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information and provide it without
warranty. Laws change and this information may contain errors and omissions.
It is up to you to confirm any information herein by doing your own research.
Other comments and resources
A reader writes in September 2011:
I wanted to give some fresh links and figures of cost.
1) I went through the IN.gov site and downloaded and filled out this form:
2) I took all of this paperwork to my local county courthouse and filed it. It did not have to be notarized or certified or anything. I simply filled in my reason as "lifestyle change." The cost for filing was $137.
3) The clerk sent the information to the local newpaper for me and it was advertized once a week for 3 weeks. The newspaper sent me a bill and a form stating which days my notice was published. The cost for the newpaper printing was $25.
4) A few days later, I received a letter from the courthouse giving me a date and time to appear for my hearing. I wasn't given the choice of a date but they said they could change it if I wanted. They chose the earliest date for me to come since they figured I wanted to finish it as soon as possible.
5) I returned to the courthouse with the form the newspaper sent me and the Notice of Filing Proof of Publication.
6) I then waited until the court date and appeared as instructed. I dressed casually but more masculine. I entered the courtroom and checked-in with the bailiff. My name was called and the judge asked me 5 questions.
1) Did I want to change my name as stated in the paperwork I had filed?
2) What is my current name?
3) What is the name I wanted to change it to?
4) Was I changing my name to evade any debtors or creditors? and
5) Did I have any questions? The hearing took all of 10 minutes and I walked out with 3 photocopies of the court order.
7) I took the photocopied court order to the clerk's office and asked for them to be certified. They only asked for $1 per copy. I went ahead and got 7 just in case. I figured I needed a copy for the bank, social security office, work, BMV, passport, birth certificate and other degrees I had achieved that required an order to change. As it turns out, none of the social security office, BMC, passport or office of vital records for my birth certificate kept the court orders. I have yet to be asked for one that wasn't given back to me.
My total cost for the entire process including 7 certified court orders was: $169.
Hopefully this is helpful for others trying to go through this in Indiana.
A reader writes in October 2003:
I recently went through this business in northwest Indiana, and actually
it was a piece of cake. I downloaded all the necessary legal forms from the
internet, represented myself, and had no hassles. The steps were:
1. File the initial document with the clerk's office. This must be notarized.
I didn't have to give a reason why I wanted to change my name; I just needed
to write the new name.
2. Advertise 3 weeks in a row in the legal notices section of the local paper.
In some ways this was the most nerve-wracking, since I was only out to family
and a few close friends at that point, but nobody reads this stuff. I told
the local paper (The Times) what I needed to do, and they wrote everything
for me. The paper sent me the appropriate paperwork and copies of the adverts.
I think the fee was on the order of $50.
3. After the 3 weeks was up, I went back to court with the paper's documents
and set up my hearing date, which had to be 1 month after the last publication
4. I arrive at the court dressed fairly androgynously: no make-up or jewelry,
loose sweater, etc. I debated a lot about what to wear and decided this was
the safest course of action. As it turned out, I nearly missed my appearance,
because I was the only person in the hallway, and I didn't look like a "Brian"
to the bailiff, so he kept ignoring me (which, though frustrating, was nice!).
5. The actual hearing lasted all of 5 minutes. The judge asked me to basically
repeat aloud what I had written in the final form, then asked me parenthetically
if this was for a "lifestyle choice" (I said yes, ma'am--this wasn't
the place to begin a debate on the nature of all this), and at last she wished
me luck and I was finished.
6. I went back to the court a week later to pick up my court order and 10
certified copies, which I then used at the DMV, credit cards, etc. I think
the fee for all this was about $120.
7. Right on schedule, I went full-time the following week All told, legal
fees + paper fees + notary fees, it came to about $175 or so.
I hope this is helpful!
A reader writes in December 2004:
I am about to go through the name change as an M2F in Northeast Indiana.
I downloaded the forms via http://www.in.gov/judiciary/selfservice/forms/name_change.html
because that is the link for the petition of name change and how I done my
name change at http://m2favery.tripod.com/m2ftransition/27.html.
The page(s) will be updated as time progresses.
The information is also on my site at http://m2favery.tripod.com.
Oh, BTW, am working with my state representative on having some transgender
laws passed. Currently, Indiana has no laws that protect transgender individuals.
I hope this helps a lot of Hoosiers (people from Indiana) too.
Indiana state law
Legal precedent for transsexuals