The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has made an important policy update for immigrant visa applicants. They can now specify their own gender identity on forms, even if it does not match the gender identity shown on their supporting documents, without having to submit proof of their gender identity, unless they are applying for a replacement naturalization certificate or citizenship document using Form N-565.
Previously, immigration forms only had two gender options, “Male” (M) and “Female” (F). However, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is actively working towards including an additional gender marker (“X”) for unspecified genders in the near future.
This policy update comes after DHS sought public input in April 2021 to better understand the challenges faced by applicants during the immigration process. Responders highlighted that the requirement to provide proof of gender changes was making it more difficult to apply for visas and citizenship. As a result, USCIS has taken steps to address these concerns and make the process more inclusive for individuals with diverse gender identities.