Quebec 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.

In July 2007 a reader sent the following:

I just wanted to let you know that I just completed my formal name and sex change in Quebec. I live in Ontario and have fought they Ontario government for 8 years before they granted my request. I then contact "Yvon Houle" at the registrar general's offices in Quebec City where they granted my request for free as I already paid in Ontario for this. My money order for 125 dollars was returned to me along with a form to obtain my birth certificate with the corrected information.

I would suggest that other who are transitioning and are born in Quebec but living in another province follow my course of action (apart from the fighting with Ontario) and send their documents directly to Mr Yvon Houle in the Quebec offices.

In June 2003 a reader sent the following:

Changing your name if you are born in Quebec and have your gender changed on your birth certificate can be very aggravating if you don't live in Quebec at the time of application.

Quebec as now passed a new law that state that you must be a resident of that province for at least one year before applying for those changes. 

Which means that if you were born in Quebec and now live in a different province you will have to move back to Quebec and live there for one year before been able to apply for those changes. 

I was able to have my name changed before that new law was introduced about 2 years ago, but wasn't able to get my birth certificate amended.  If anyone has more information I would be glad to hear from you since I have no intentions of quitting my job just to move back Quebec.
The person at the Montreal Vital statistic who seem to be stopping the process is:
Mrs. Louise Mercier, director of Montreal Vital statistics
in Québec City (418) 643-3900
in Montréal (514) 864-3900
their web site is :
Change of name application (adult) :
Persons applying to the Registrar of Civil Status for a change of name must be Canadian citizens of full age and have been domiciled in Québec for at least one year.

Change of designation of sex application :

A person who has successfully undergone medical treatments and surgical operations involving a structural modification of the sexual organs may obtain a change of designation of sex.

This person must be an unmarried Canadian citizen of full age who has been domiciled in Québec for at least one year.

A reader's experiences

I decided to get going on this right away as it really started to make me mad: ~^_^~ Emailed them in guy mode:


Je suis né à Montréal en 1959 et maintenant j'habite en Colombie Britannique. Je suis acteur à mi-temps et mon métier s'améliore de même que mes perspectives pour de meilleurs rôles.

J'aime la profession, je veux le faire à plein temps et
mon agent m'a conseillé de changer mon nom.
Sur votre site Web à l'endroit

il indique ceci:

"Toute personne qui demande un changement de nom au Directeur de l'état civil doit être majeure, de nationalité canadienne et *domiciliée au Québec depuis au moins un an.*"

Je ne peux pas habiter au Québec pour la durée d'un an parce que mon employeur a seulement des bureaux en Colombie Britannique. Que est-ce que je peux faire? Merci de votre aide et svp pardon mon Français! Vous pouvez voir probablement que je suis hors de la pratique! J'espère avoir en arrière de vos nouvelles bientôt.

Salut et Namaste, tout le monde!
Quick translation - I want to change my name beacuse I want to go "full-time as an actor" and my current name sucks. ;-) I can't live in Quebec for a whole year because my employer only has offices in BC. What do I do?

Their response:

"Hello, In answer to your question, because you do not live in Quebec, you must obtain a judgement or a certificate of renaming returned officialy by an out-of-Quebec authority. You must forward to us the original of this document so that we can modify your birth certification on the Register of Births, Marriages and Deaths of Quebec and provide you with a new Birth Certificate. This new original will be turned over to you. Any certificate or copies that the Director will provide you thereafter will correspond to your new identity. We hope that this information is useful for you."

Tremendously, I think!

Shwoo'! I thought we were going to have more trouble than that, but obviously not! This was not the same person that the other girl wrote about so either she's gone or, I suspect, if you avoid the Montreal office and go straight to the top in the provincial main office in Quebec City you'll be fine. Everyone should use as an introductory entry point and confirm the proper address to send your documentation and I also suggest that you include a cover letter in English and French. Use the bable fish translater at:

She didn't say anything about it but I'm sure the fee structure on the Quebec site still apply. Here's the reply en francais for your French readers:

"Bonjour, En réponse à votre question, parce que vous n'habitez pas au Québec, vous devez obtenir un jugement ou un certificat de changement de nom rendu hors du Québec, vous devez nous faire parvenir l'original de ce document pour que nous puissions modifier votre acte de naissance au registre de l'état civil du Québec. Cet original vous sera retourné. Tout certificat ou copie d'acte que le Directeur de l'état civil vous émettra par la suite correspondra à votre nouvelle identité. Nous espérons que cette information vous soit utile."

Other resources


Quebec law

Precedent for transsexuals

[no specific case noted]