What you'll need to do
To change a child’s record of sex, both parents named on the child’s birth certificate must apply.
A child can record their consent in the application. Children aged 12 or over should do this. Children under 12 can also choose to record their consent.
Upload the completed child’s consent with your application.
Learn more about uploading hard copy documents.
One parent can apply if:
- You are the only parent named on the child’s birth certificate
- There is no other surviving parent of the child
- You have a court order approving the change. A court order granting you sole parental responsibility alone does not give you the right to change your child's record of sex.
You will need to upload evidence. This might be the other parent’s death certificate or a court order.
A guardian can apply if they have a permanent care order or other court order giving them responsibility for the child.
1. Your details
At minimum, we’ll ask you for:
- The child’s name, date of birth and place of birth
- Your name and address
- Name and address of the second parent (if applicable).
2. What the child wants the sex on their birth certificate to be
BDM accepts most sex descriptors. However, there are some the law doesn’t allow. This may include descriptors that are:
- Obscene or offensive
- Impractical (for example, it is too long or contains symbols)
- Restricted for other reasons (for example, chosen for an improper purpose.
You must enter a sex descriptor for the child.
As part of your application, you’ll need to upload both of the following:
- A statutory declaration from each of the child’s parent(s) or guardian(s), stating that:
- The child’s birth is registered outside Victoria
- The child has lived in Victoria for at least 12 months. (You do not need to do this if you have a County Court order waiving this requirement)
- The child consents to their record of sex being changed to the sex descriptor nominated in the application
- You believe the change is in the child’s best interests
- The child’s record of sex has not been issued a new recognised details certificate in the last 12 months.
- A supporting statement from an authorised person. They must state that in their opinion:
- Changing the child’s record of sex is in the child’s best interests
- If the child is under 16, the child has capacity to consent to the change of their record of sex.
A person authorised to make a supporting statement is:
- An adult who has known the child for at least 12 months and who is not the child’s parent or guardian
- A doctor or psychologist.
You do not need a supporting statement if you can upload a County Court order stating that the change is in the child’s best interests OR a current certificate issued under a law of another Australian state or territory that relates to the recognition of the child’s sex.
3. Proof of living in Victoria for at least 12 months
Documents in this list must cover at least the last 12 months.
If your child is of school age:
- Confirmation of school attendance (letter on school letterhead or academic results)
- Bank statements (showing Victorian transactions)
If your child is not of school age, each parent must prove that they live in Victoria. Joint (shared) material is acceptable. Examples include:
- Utility accounts (for example, electricity, gas, water)
- Lease or tenancy agreement
- Confirmation of enrolment in a Victorian tertiary institution.
You do not need to attach this if you have a court order waiving this requirement.
4. Advise if the child is in a Youth Justice facility
If the child is detained, you must attach approval from the Secretary of the Department of Justice and Community Safety to change the child’s record of sex.
It is an offence to apply without this approval.
5. Proof of your identity
Each parent or guardian must provide proof of their identity.
Each parent must provide:
- One identity document showing photograph and signature; and
- Two documents showing that your identity is known in the community.
Identity document showing photograph and signature
Each parent must provide one of the following:
- Australian passport
- Overseas passport
- Australian driver licence (or learner permit)
- Travel document issued by the Department of Home Affairs:
- Document for Travel to Australia.
There are other ways to prove your identity.
Documents must be current (not expired). If you cannot provide current photo identification, please contact us.
Any documents not in English must be accompanied by a certified translation. Learn more about the requirements for translated documents.
6. Proof of the child's identity
A certified copy of the child’s overseas birth certificate (with certified translation if it isn't in English) is all you need.
If you can’t provide this, please contact us.
7. Proof of parentage
The easiest way to do this is with your child’s overseas birth certificate. For other options, refer to Parental/ guardian participation tab.