Entry #30: Right to change legal gender in South Africa

Current Version

RegionSouth Africa
IssueRight to change legal gender
StatusLegal, but requires medical diagnosis
Start DateMar 15, 2004
End Datenow
DescriptionThe Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.
Sources https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act" https://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Transgender-rights-in-South-Africa.pdf


Revision History (5)

Revision by Notdog1996. Status more accurate

Old Value New Value (Current)
ValueLegal, no restrictionsLegal, but requires medical diagnosis

Revision by Markissik. Little correction

Old Value New Value
NoteThe Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender confirmation/affirmation/reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.The Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.
Show Difference
The Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender confirmation/affirmation/reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required. reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.

Revision by Markissik. Correcting status after several reports. Adding one more source and updating the description

Old Value New Value
ValueLegal, but requires surgeryLegal, no restrictions
NoteMedical OR surgical treatment required to change legal gender.The Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender confirmation/affirmation/reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.
Show Difference
Medical OR surgical treatment required to change legal gender. The Alteration of Sex Description and Sex Status Act allows people to apply to have their sex status altered in the population registry, and consequently to receive identity documents and passports indicating their gender identity. The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment. This includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender confirmation/affirmation/reassignment, therefore surgery per se is not required.
Sources https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act" https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act"

https://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Transgender-rights-in-South-Africa.pdf
Show Difference
https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act" https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act" https://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Transgender-rights-in-South-Africa.pdf

Revision by maddyksf

Old Value New Value
ValueLegal, no restrictionsLegal, but requires surgery
Reports (4)
  • Status is not correct "As correctly stated. medical or surgical treatment required but the heading still says only surgery!"
  • Status is not correct "Requires surgery OR hormones, some kind of medical intervention but not only surgery. Here is a source: https://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Transgender-rights-in-South-Africa.pdf"
  • Status is not correct "The law states that transgender persons must undergo gender reassignment, however this includes medical interventions but is not limited to surgery alone. Hormone therapy is considered to be gender confirmation/affirmation/reassignment."
  • Status is not correct "I'm not sure on the proper sourcing but I am a trans woman living in SA and as far as I know you do not require surgery in order to legally change your sex. All you need is a letter from 2 doctors confirming that you have undergone sufficient medical intervention. That medical intervention does not however need to be surgery, in my case I was able to change my legal sex without any surgery, hormones was the medical intervention that my doctors specified, but I have heard that you don't even need to be on hormones for a gender marker change. Check the BeTrue2Me website for more information. "

Revision by DuffdeNecker

Old Value (Original) New Value
ValueLegal, but requires surgeryLegal, no restrictions
NoteMedical OR surgical treatment required to change legal gender.
Show Difference
Medical OR surgical treatment required to change legal gender.
Sourceshttp://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=68026 https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act"
Show Difference
http://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=68026 https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act"
Reports (7)
  • Note field is incorrect "Medical OR surgical treatment required (surgery therefor not necessarily needed) https://www.gov.za/documents/alteration-sex-description-and-sex-status-act"
  • Sources are invalid or broken "Legal, surgury not required as well as third party acsess."
  • Other "This source had absolutly nothing to do with changing the legal gender"
  • Other "There's a little bit of nuance to this. You need a note from a doctor certifying you have "undergone medical transition" in order to have your legal gender changed. The doctor can be an endocrinologist and the "medical transition" can be hormone therapy. No actual surgery is required."
  • Status is not correct "No surgery is required, only hormone replacement therapy."
  • Status is not correct "surgery or hormone therapy"
  • Status is not correct "Surgery is not required. Technically neither is hormone replacement therapy, but then you have to argue that your gender 'evolved through natural means'. Source: http://www.saflii.org/za/legis/consol_act/aosdassa2003466/"

brennen created this entry.