Posted on 13. February 2013 in Legal Gender Recognition

Legal Gender Recognition in Europe Toolkit

1st version

For the second version of this toolkit go to:

This publication aims to support trans rights activists and those working professionally on gender recognition procedures in order to advance the human rights of trans people. The toolkit discusses the current jurisprudence at the European level and the applicable human rights standards that need to be implemented by states in Europe. With this publication, we want to contribute to a development that puts the human rights of the individual at the heart of recognition procedures in Europe. We hope to contribute to the manifold discussions and attempts currently occurring in many countries in Europe to reform or introduce gender recognition legislation that is respectful of the human rights of those it seeks to serve.

Many trans people face problems in daily life because their legal gender in their ID documents does not match their gender identity. Picking up a parcel at the post office, applying for a job, boarding a plane or lodging a harassment complaint can become a repeated source of harassment, unfounded suspicion and even violence. The purpose of gender recognition procedures is to overcome this gap, giving official recognition to a trans person’s gender identity. Gender recognition goes beyond being an administrative act: it is essential in order for many trans people to be able to live a life of dignity and respect.


Toolkit Legal Gender Recognition in Europe

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Or download separately:

Checklist Gender Recognition

Toolkit Legal Gender Recognition in Europe

Myth Busters

Toolkit Legal Gender Recognition in Europe

This publication is part of TGEU’s Access All Areas! Recognition Opens Doors campaign. Click on the logo to learn more about the campaign.

Access All Areas Recognition Opens Doors


The present document has been created with the greatest care, but it does not claim to be complete. Please send feedback and suggestions for amendments to While the toolkit aims to provide information and inspiration regarding legal questions pertaining to legal gender recognition, it is strongly recommended that you seek professional counsel before taking legal action in concrete cases.

With support from the Open Society Foundation. Sole responsibility lies with the authors, and the Open Society Foundation is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.