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ABI calls for wider review of rulings on transsexuals

The ABI is calling for industry views on a wider Government consultation on legislation to recognise transsexuals in their changed gender.

The proposals would give transsexuals the right to be treated in their new gender for all financial services products.

The Government wants to legislate on the issue after the European Court of Human Rights ruled that people who have made a decisive and permanent change of sex should be treated in that gender consistently.

Under current law, the UK&#39s estimated 5,000 transsexuals cannot get new birth certificates and can only have rights based on their gender at birth. The proposals would see transsexuals treated as their new gender for all purposes, including marriage.

The Government accepts that its proposed new law will affect actuarial calculations for insurance and pension products. Life companies could be one of the exceptions to a proposed rule that transsexuals should be allowed to keep their gender history private.

Life offices are understood to want to avoid being obliged to pay refunds or demand extra premiums where sex change took place after a contract had been effected.

Clerical Medical pensions strategy manager Nigel Stammers says: “The main issue is whether rates are based on the original or the changed gender. We would like to see rates of premium change from the date of the sex change but avoid retrospective rebates or demands for extra contributions.”

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