Lane County Judge Denied A Eugene Resident's Petition To Identify As Nonbinary

Nov 7, 2019

Several Oregon legal rights groups, advocates, and law professors filed amicus briefs in support of a Eugene resident, Thursday. This comes after a Lane County Circuit Court Judge denied their petition to identify as nonbinary.

Jones David Hollister is nonbinary, meaning they don’t identify as male or female. And this, can make filling out forms and documents tricky.

“Having a legal document from the court that says this is legal makes it so that I have the ability push the issue if the company or organization, or you know city department, or whatever has not changed that,” Hollister said.

Jones David Hollister
Credit Melorie Begay/KLCC News

In January, Hollister filed a form known as the 'Petition for Sex Change' with the Lane County Courthouse to aquire legal designation to change their gender marker to nonbinary. However,  Judge Charles D. Carlson denied the petition.

Carlson detemined ORS 33.460, a law that allows people to change their gender marker, only applies if the person were to change their identity to male or female, not nonbinary.

Hollister and their attorney, Lorena Reynolds with The Reynolds Law Firm in Corvallis, have filed an appeal with the Oregon Court of Appeals. The appeal states Judge Carlson's decision was "erroneously construed," and was inaccurately interpretted. 

Meanwhile, advocates and civil rights groups including Basic Rights Oregon, the ACLU of Oregon, Transgender Law Center, InterAct, Beyond Binary Legal, and law professors from three Oregon law schools, will have filed briefs in support of Hollister by Friday. Nonbinary Oregonians have also voices their support of Hollister and equity for nonbinary people.