Third Gender Markers on WA State IDs Community Questions and Answers
Starting on November 13th, 2019 you will be able to get a Washington State ID or driver’s license with an ‘x’ gender marker. In this instance the Department of Licensing has defined x as ‘neither exclusively male or female.’
In addition to this exciting change we are happy to share that State is moving to a self attestation model for amending your gender marker; meaning you will no longer need a physician, mental health provider or other licensed professional to sign off your request to amend your gender marker.
Additionally, beginning on November 13th, 2019 if you already have a valid Washington State ID or driver’s license you will no longer need to pay fees to amend your gender marker and get a new ID or driver’s license!
Down below we have prepared a questions and answers fact sheet based on the questions we received from community. You can also go online here for more information from the DoL as this policy goes in to affect on November 13th, 2019. Should you have any trouble getting the gender marker on your Washington State ID or driver’s license please do not hesitate to reach out to us for support at 206.849.7859 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community Questions and Answers:
What gender markers will be available now?
Starting on November 13th, 2019 you will be able to choose between m, f or x gender markers on your Washington State ID or driver’s license.
If I am changing my gender marker and my name will I have to pay a fee?
Yes. If you are amending any other information on your ID or driver’s license you will have to pay the appropriate fee.
How will this impact my passport, social security card or other document issued by the federal government?
Unfortunately this new rule does not apply to documents issued by the federal government; currently you are unable to to get an x gender marker on any federally issued identity documents. There is no legal penalty for having identity documents with different gender markers on them. If you would like support in thinking through potential impacts of having different gender markers on your identity documents you can reach out to us for help.
Is it safe to choose X as a gender marker? Will having an X gender marker lead to further discrimination/easier chance to discriminate?
We recognize that some community members (of varying races, ethnicities, abilities, genders and more) may not see the X gender marker as a safe/reasonable option (due to systemic racism, transphobia, ableism, etc). We encourage community to decide on a gender marker that is most comfortable and authentic to themselves, while also considering their safety. At this time, we can not confirm what training, if any, law enforcement agency in Washington State has had around the new gender marker.
Are Washington residents born outside of Washington able to do this?
Yes. You simply have to satisfy the requirements of obtaining a Washington ID or driver’s license. More information on how to obtain a Washington ID or driver’s license here.
Will minors be able to get an x on their driver’s license or ID?
Yes. Minors will be able to get an x on their driver’s license or IDs. We are awaiting more details from the DoL about how this process might differ for minors and will share it as soon as we receive it.
Will I be able to get an x on my enhanced ID or driver’s license?
Yes. You will still need to bring the supporting documents needed for an enhanced ID or driver’s license with you - it does not matter if the gender markers on those documents do not match. You can find out more about the process to obtain an enhanced ID here.
Do I need to have legally changed my name to use self attestation to amend my gender marker?
No. You do not need to legally change your name to amend your gender marker on your Washington State ID or driver’s license.
If you anticipate wanting to do so in the future we encourage you to change your gender marker and name at the same time to make updating that information easier for you. If you are unable to afford your legal name change please reach out to us as we have funds to support community members to amend their identity documents.
Can I use a Washington State ID or license with an x gender marker to change my hospital or insurance records?
Maybe. It is currently unclear at this time how this will impact other systems and organizations that interact or collect information like your gender marker. If you would like to use your newly amended Washington State ID or driver’s license as a supporting document to amend your gender marker elsewhere please reach out to us for support; our staff are happy to meet with community members and help folks think through how to amend their other identity documents.
Where can I find more information on this new process?
We anticipate more information on the new process to amending your gender marker on Washington State IDs or driver’s licenses to be available here when the new gender marker is made available on November 13th, 2019. You can find more information on the rule making process that led to this announcement here.