New York, NY- Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund announces a name change victory for a transgender man in New York. A state appeals court has granted a legal name change for Ben Stanford, reversing a lower court decision that initially denied his name change petition because he declined to share “medical evidence” of his gender transition.
Attorney Laurie Styka Bloom of the law firm Nixon Peabody, working as pro bono counsel for TLDEF, argued that trans people should not be forced to provide more evidence than any other person seeking a name change.
Ben expressed relief that his name change has been granted.
“I have worked hard to be who I am and live my life authentically. Having a name that did not match my identity caused me great difficulty in my daily life, particularly when forced to present inaccurate identification,” said Ben. “Thankfully I finally have a name that accurately reflects my true self. I am grateful to TLDEF and Nixon Peabody for helping me through this ordeal. I can now move forward with my life as myself.”
“It is critical for trans persons to align their legal names with who they are to help them challenge the discrimination they already face in education, health care, housing and public accommodations,” said TLDEF Staff Attorney Ezra Young. “Navigating the legal system can be expensive, time consuming and intimidating. We are committed to providing our clients with legal assistance that brings positive outcomes and helps them lead happier, healthier lives. We are thrilled to see Ben’s name change come through once and for all.”