Recognising gender on birth certificates and exploring a gender registration process for people born overseas

Self-identification process to recognise gender on birth certificates

A self-identification process for people to amend the sex on their New Zealand birth certificate was enacted in December 2021.

The self-identification process will be available from 15 June 2023, and is important to transgender, intersex, nonbinary and takatāpui people. This self-identification process will replace the Family Court process for amending sex on birth certificates.

Final policy decisions released on self-identification regulations

The Government has recently made decisions on the regulations to support the self-identification process. These decisions, which will come into effect in June 2023, have been informed by the consultation that was undertaken in mid-2022, discussed on the Public Consultation and Submissions page. 

Sex and gender markers other than male and female

The regulations will introduce additional markers besides ‘male’ and ‘female’ for birth certificates. The additional sex and gender markers will be:

  •  ‘a non-binary gender’; and
  •  ‘another gender’.

Who can act as a suitably qualified third party?

The list of third parties who can support a child or young person’s application will include:

  • registered professionals (doctors, psychologists, psychotherapists, social workers, nurses, and counsellors); and
  • any person aged 18 or over that has known a child or young person for 12 months or more.

There will not be additional requirements if a person applies multiple times

The Government consulted on potential additional requirements that must be met if a person applies to change their name and sex more than once. No such additional requirements will be imposed.

Further information on these decisions

Further information on these decisions can be found in the Cabinet paper, available here: Proactive Releases -

Next steps

Indicative timing for the self-identification regulations

Below is an indicative timeline for finalising and making available the self-identification process:

Early-mid 2023: Government will draft the self-identification regulations. Before 15 June 2023: The self-identification regulations will be in place. 15 June 2023: Go-live date for self-identification process.


If you have any questions about the next steps, or the proposals in the discussion document, please email us at