Trans in the South: A Guide to Resources and Services

New data from the Williams Institute shows that more than 300,000 trans folks call the South home. Too often, they face a lack of resources and support. We often hear stories of people going without medical care or traveling hours to reach a doctor who will treat them with respect. That’s got to change. 

To respond to that need, the Campaign for Southern Equality is releasing Trans in the South: A Guide to Resources and Services.

In the pages of this edition of Trans in the South you’ll find lists of trans-friendly service providers – from doctors to attorneys to counselors – across the South as well as resources to assist with funding medical transition. This information has been collected and vetted by Ivy Gibson-Hill, our LGBT Rights Toolkit Coordinator. We hope this resource guide helps people access the services they need to survive and to thrive.

You can download a PDF of Trans in the South: A Guide to Resources by clicking here.


Laws in your state

Laws regarding adoption, nondiscrimination protections, hate crimes reporting and much more vary from state to state. For information about the policies that affect LGBT people in your state, please see these resources from national LGBT organizations:

Human Rights Campaign’s state law maps

Lambda Legal’s state law map

For more information about state-issued documents in all 50 states, see the National Center for Transgender Equality’s ID Documents Center.

Power of Attorney

Protect your rights with estate planning tools like health care power of attorney forms. Estate planning makes clear your wishes for treatment during emergencies, at the end of your life, and beyond. For LGBT people and their families, estate planning is a tool that can be used to secure basic rights that many take for granted. If you haven’t completed these important documents, it’s important to do so as soon as possible, at any age, whether you are single or partnered.

These documents will help you protect your rights and wishes:

  • Health Care Power of Attorney
  • Durable Power of Attorney
  • Will
  • Hospitable Visitation Form

Learn more about these tools in Life Lines, a publication of the National Center for Lesbian Rights.

Louisiana Name Change Guidelines


LGBT Rights Louisiana MapThis document is intended for informational use only, and is in no way intended to constitute legal advice or the opinions of the Campaign for Southern Equality. Because the law is constantly changing, the Campaign for Southern Equality cannot guarantee that this information is accurate and up-to-date.  Procedures may vary by county.  If you have any questions, please consult a licensed attorney.

Louisiana law about name changes: Louisiana Statute 13:4751

What You Need:

Total Estimated Costs: Costs vary by parish, contact your local clerk. Find a listing here.


  • Fill out the petition and get it notarized.
  • File the petition with the clerk of court in the parish where you live, along with the filing fee.
  • Your court date will be set by the clerk. Appear in court on the date scheduled and if the court grants your petition, you will receive a court order for a name change.

*Additional documents may be required:  Driver’s license or picture ID, birth certificate or current passport, copies of current bills showing current address.

Don’t Forget: Once your name change has been approved, you will need to update this with several government agencies. This includes changing your name with the Social Security Administration and the Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles. You will need to change your name with Social Security Administration prior to changing it with the OMV. You will need to bring the copy of your name change order along with $25.00 (costs vary depending on parish) for a corrected license.


Louisiana will change both name and sex, and will issue a new birth certificate rather than amend the old one.  According to the Louisiana Department of Public Health/Vital Records Registry, a person born in Louisiana may change their name and gender on their birth certificate pursuant to Louisiana Revised Statute (RS) 40:62, which can be found here:

The statute allows a person to change their gender if they have “sustained sex reassignment or corrective surgery which has changed the anatomical structure of the sex of the individual to that of a sex other than that which appears on the original birth certificate.” RS 40:62(A)

It is unclear what types of surgery constitute “sex reassignment of corrective surgery.” However, in determining whether a person has had such surgery, the court “shall require such proof as it deems necessary to be convinced that the petitioner was properly diagnosed as a transsexual or pseudo-hermaphrodite, that sex reassignment or corrective surgery has been properly performed upon the petitioner, and that as a result of such surgery and subsequent medical treatment the anatomical structure of the sex of the petitioner has been changed to a sex other than that which is stated on the original birth certificate of the petitioner.” RS 40:62(C).

To change name and gender on a Louisiana birth certificate, you must first submit a legal petition and include a surgeon’s letter and any other supporting materials detailing how you have met the requirements of the statute. You will likely have to get a Louisiana attorney to write the petition. The petition has to be submitted to the court in the parish where you were born, or to Orleans parish (where the Vital records registry is located). Louisiana does not accept name and gender change orders from any other jurisdiction, so even if you have obtained these orders in another state, Louisiana might refuse to change your birth certificate. The court will hear the petition, and if granted, will issue an order to change name and gender. You will then submit the order, with a fee, to the Louisiana Vital Records Registry, and they will issue a new birth certificate.

If you have questions about the process, you can email the Vital Records registry at or contact them at (540) 219-4500.

The state of Louisiana maintains this page telling how to change the sex and name on the driver’s license.

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Trans in the South Resource Guide

In the pages of this edition of Trans in the South you’ll find lists of trans-friendly service providers – from doctors to attorneys to counselors – across the South as well as resources to assist with funding medical transition.

You can download a PDF of Trans in the South: A Guide to Resources by clicking here.

From the CSE Blog:

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