Illinois Law

Illinois has several laws specifically addressing transgender people and our needs and risks. Read this page to learn our rights.

Current Law

Right to Non-discrimination

In 2005, the state of Illinois passed the Illinois Human Rights Act Protections Regarding Sexual Orientation. This act prevents treating anyone differently regarding employment, housing, access to financial credit, and public accommodations based on their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. For more information, read IGA's official document or the full text of the law.

Name Change

Anyone in Illinois can change their name including the name listed on their driver's license or state id and birth certificate. Because the law does not categorize feminine or masculine names, no evidence of gender change is required. All that is required is approximately $500 and a trip to the Daily Center. After changing your driver's license and/or state ID and/or birth certificate, any of those documents are used to change your social security card and passport.

Gender Marker Change

Those with an Illinois birth certificate may change their gender marker. Sexual reassignment surgery is required for the document change.

Marriage

Illinois citizens can marry a person of the sex opposite to the gender listed on their birth certificate. This applies for transgender and cisgender people, whether they have had or not had a name change or a birth certificate change. If a person marries and later changes their gender marker, their marriage remains intact. This is despite that the resulting marriage is, in the eyes of the law, a same-sex marriage which are prohibited by Illinois law. This represents a legal gray zone but will only pose issues if the couple divorces and battles over custody or property. Therefore, IGA encourages trans people to do their best to retain their marriage and, if not yet married, find a spouse who fully supports their gender identity. Illinois does not recognize civil unions, domestic partnerships, or same-sex marriages from other states.