In re Rockefeller
About the Plaintiff
The legal name change Evan Rockefeller, a 26-year-old Rochester, New York teacher’s aide, applied for in November 2005 was just one of the steps that the medical profession widely agrees on and recommends as standard practice for people who are going through the process of gender transition. But while granting name change petitions for transgender people is routine in most courts across the U.S., Rockefeller was shocked when a New York judge rejected his application, demanding that he provide “medical evidence” of sex reassignment surgery. Under the law, the judge’s demand for proof of surgery oversteps state law and violates Rockefeller’s right to medical privacy.
Status: The ACLU intended to appeal, but Evan decided to move to a jurisdiction where he was able to secure his name change without incident.