Transvestite prevented from changing name

A transvestite from the village of Tjällmo in south-eastern Sweden has had his application for a name change turned down.

Lennart Widahr had wanted to change his name to Pia but the National Tax Board (Skatteverket) informed him that the only possible way for him to receive a female name was to first have a sex change. Widahr has no plans to do so, according to newspaper Östgöta Correspondenten.

Widahr has used the name Pia in his daily life ever since his second marriage came to and end and he admitted that he had secretly been a transvestite all his life.

“I do actually think it’s good that the there is a law governing names, which prevents parents from giving kids all sorts of strange names that will make life difficult for them later. But, having said that, I do think that adults should be allowed to choose their first name,” said Widahr.

The tax board considered Pia to be an inappropriate name for a man. Widahr appealed the decision to the county court, but the tax board’s initial verdict was upheld.

“It’s not vital and I’m not going to appeal. But it would have been nice since the name reflects part of my identity,” said Widahr.