Remove the Felony Bar for Individuals Seeking a Name Change


HB 2542 brings our state’s overly-restrictive name change law, in line with the majority of other states and helps those who are transgender, gender-expansive people and survivors of human trafficking live safer and more authentic lives by removing the ten-year waiting period and the lifetime ban. Make your voice heard in support of this bill!

Message Recipients:
State Representatives

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Your Message
Support HB 2542!
Dear State Representative,

I write to urge you to support House Bill 2542 on the House floor. This bill makes changes to Illinois’ current, overly-restrictive name change law, a measure out of step with most other states across the country. It is time to change this law that directly impacts many residents of Illinois. HB 2542 does this while it continues to allow judges to assess whether or not an individual request for a name change should be permitted.

Illinois’ name change law is one of the most restrictive in the country. It bars anyone with a felony conviction to change their name for a full decade after they complete a sentence. This provision harms people, denying them a chance to change their name and move on with their lives, especially those who are transgender, are a victim of human trafficking, or when someone marries.

Our criminal legal system is supposed to be based in part on rehabilitation – not just punishment. Denying someone who is transgender legal documents that reflect their identity for a decade simply prolongs the punishment. At the same time, the measure before you allows a judge to assess on a case-by-case basis if someone is seeking to change their name for an appropriate purpose. The local State’s Attorney office also can weigh in.

It is critical for people to have legal documents that are accurate. We can provide this ability safely under HB 2542. Please sponsor and support this measure.


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