BY Christopher Mangum
October 21 2009 5:10 PM ET
A panel of state supreme court justices in Manhattan ruled on Wednesday that a transgender person does not need medical documentation to obtain judicial permission for a name change.
Yuri Winn-Ritzenberg, who petitioned the New York City civil court to
change his name from Leah Uri Winn-Ritzenberg, was denied his request
in February after failing to provide a letter from a physician,
psychologist, or social worker.
The Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund, a nonprofit advocacy group, took on Winn-Ritzenberg’s case, arguing that transgender people are held to a higher standard when it comes to name-change petitions.
On Wednesday, the three justices ruled unanimously to reverse the lower court's decision. “There is no sound basis in law or policy to engraft upon the statutory provisions an additional requirement that a transgendered-petition present medical substantial for the desired name change,” read the supreme court decision, according to The New York Times.
“This ruling means that I can finally change my name and move forward with my life,” Winn-Ritzenberg said in a statement following the ruling. “My gender transition has been a very personal journey, and no one is in a better position to decide that I need to change my name than I am.”
- Peace Corps Recognizes, Respects Same-Sex Couples
- Schumer Admits Reason He Left Gays Out of Immigration 'Provides Little Comfort'
- A Reason for Pride: Gay Parents Are Changing the World
- Op-ed: Adopting the T in LGBT
- Donald Rumsfeld Isn't Sure, But Marriage Equality Might Lead to Polygamy
- WATCH: Transgender Woman Arrested for Exposing Breasts, Jailed With Men
Sign Up For Email Updates
- Sports Water Polo Player Addresses WeHo City Council in Speedo May 22 2013 10:00 PM
- Comics and Graphic Novels This Gay Superhero Comic Is So Super Duper May 22 2013 9:00 PM
- The End of Bullying Could Video Games Be a Cure for Anti-LGBT Bullying? May 22 2013 8:15 PM
- Women Kaitlyn Hunt's Lawyer: Possible Plea Deal, But No Felony For Same-Sex High School Relationship May 22 2013 7:03 PM
- Military Donald Rumsfeld Isn't Sure, But Marriage Equality Might Lead to Polygamy May 22 2013 7:01 PM
- Internet WATCH: The First AIDS Generation in Giant Town Hall May 22 2013 6:16 PM
- Politics Joe Biden Praises Jewish Leaders for Marriage Equality May 22 2013 6:09 PM