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USCIS updates policy to make a third gender category

On Behalf of | Apr 17, 2024 | Immigration Law

On March 31, 2023, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) updated its policy manual to allow individuals requesting immigration benefits to self-identify their gender. The gender selected would not have to match the applicant’s gender on their supporting government identification and documentation.

Additionally, the update eliminates the requirement for people requesting immigration benefits to submit proof of their gender identity when filing a request to change their gender. However, the update does not apply to Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document. Applicants for this form will have to continue to submit proof of their gender identity.

Currently, the only gender markers available on USCIS forms are “Male” or “Female.” DHS plans to include a third gender marker, “X.” USCIS will update its forms and Policy Manual accordingly. USCIS notes that these changes were created in response to DHS’s Request for Public Input seeking feedback on barriers to USCIS benefits and services. Public responses to the DHS Request voiced that the evidentiary requirements to gender marker changes were overly burdensome and created barriers for requesting immigration benefits.