Bereavement: A guide for Transsexual, Transgender people and their loved ones

Bereavement: A guide for Transsexual, Transgender people and their loved ones

This booklet has been produced to assist bereaved trans people or friends, or the family of a trans person who has died. It will also inform professionals such as coroners, pathologists, mortuary staff and undertakers to understand the particular needs of trans people in the circumstances of death.

There have been recent legal changes regarding gender recognition for legal purposes as well as obligations to protect the privacy of trans people. These impact on the obtaining and security of details of trans people in the circumstances where either they have died, or when dealing with the death of a family member.

Trans people have particular needs regarding privacy. Some for example, live only part-time in their preferred gender as they fear that transitioning to their acquired gender may put their career at risk. Some who transitioned many years ago ‘pass’ in public life as non-trans people and some living permanently in their new gender are clearly trans people to those they interact with.

Trans people are aware of the prejudices which exist – and the popularity of ‘sex swap’ stories in the media and keep a low profile in their local communities. For many, the death of a trans person brings the additional anxiety of dealing with the appropriate authorities and maintaining the status of the deceased as trans, private. There will also be particular concerns for the relatives or partner of a deceased trans person regarding the treatment of the body by funeral directors and mortuary staff, particularly if the trans person has not undergone genital surgery.

We hope that this booklet will help bereaved people cope with the difficulties of the event of a death and clarify the legal situation for all.

Click here to download the booklet.