German court: intersex plaintiff can't register as 'inter'

AP News
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Posted: Aug 04, 2016 9:44 AM

BERLIN (AP) — A person with a genetic abnormality who identifies as neither woman nor man can't be entered in Germany's birth register under an alternative label such as "inter" or "diverse," a German federal court said Thursday.

The plaintiff was identified by advocacy group Dritte Option only as Vanja, born in 1989 and registered as a girl. Vanja provided the Federal Court of Justice with an analysis showing one X chromosome but no second sexual chromosome. Women have two X chromosomes, while men have one X and one Y chromosome.

In a June 22 ruling published Thursday, the court rejected a request to switch the birth register entry to "inter" or "diverse." It said German family law recognizes only male or female and, although a legal revision in 2013 does allow people not to be registered as being of either gender, "it did not create a further sex."

That means there is an option to request having the registration as a girl removed from the records and not replaced — an option that the plaintiff says isn't good enough.

The court, however, argued that the legal revision means "the question of whether the previous necessity of being entered in the birth register as either male or female violates intersexuals' fundamental rights no longer arises."

Dritte Option, which was involved in preparing the case, said the plaintiff plans to go to Germany's highest court, the Federal Constitutional Court.