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At the Law Office of Crystal M. Richardson

We support LGBTQIA+ rights
and non-traditional families
of all kinds


We understand that family can mean different things to different people, including non-biological bonds based on mutual love, support, and care. Our firm respects all family dynamics, whether chosen or biological. Particularly within the LGBTQIA+ community, chosen family may be the ones who step in to offer that essential love and support not otherwise given by biological family.
We also understand that family may extend beyond the nuclear model of married parents and their children. Families may take the form of grandparents raising grandchildren, unmarried couples living together with their children, friends cohabitating and sharing expenses, polyamorous families with multiple partners, same-gender loving couples, and many more. We believe all families, no matter their form, deserve the same freedom to form legally stable bonds and familial ties.
Our legal system is complex, and laws are ever changing. This can cause challenges for non-traditional families attempting to exercise their right to form legal bonds with one another. It is critical that these families receive solid legal advice and guidance tailored to their unique situation. Together, we can navigate the changing legal landscape and protect the ones we love.

The attorneys at the Law Office of Crystal M. Richardson, PLLC have worked with the LGBTQIA+ community since 2014, with the understanding that everyone is entitled to fairness and justice. We have long been advocates for equality and justice for all, and believe estate planning is an essential piece of the equity puzzle. We seek to connect marginalized communities with services that center their whole personhood, and have a keen understanding of the needs of LGBTQIA+ and other non-traditional families.


Our name and how we identify ourselves is a critical part of ones dignity and self-respect. At the Law Office of Crystal M. Richardson we offer legal name and gender marker change services to transgender, gender non-conforming, and nonbinary individuals seeking to make their legal identities match their lived experiences. 
A person in North Carolina can change the sex designation on their birth certificate by submitting a sworn statement along with a passport or valid ID, or certification from a licensed healthcare professional, case manager, or social worker affirming their identity.
As of June 2022, a federal court ruled that North Carolinians may now change their gender marker without having to undergo medical treatment. This means that transgender people are no longer required to undergo surgeries or medically transition to be legally recognized according to their lived experiences.

Obtaining a Name or Gender Marker Change in North Carolina

Obtain fingerprints for a criminal background check. Make sure to retain the results once you submit these to both the State and Federal Bureaus of Investigation. 

Obtain two Affidavits of Character. These Affidavits must then be executed regarding any outstanding tax and/or child support obligations

Obtain a certified copy of your current birth certificate, as well as a valid form of ID and proof of residency in the form of a lease, utility bill or other document. 

Complete a Petition for Name Change and provide all required notice. Filing fees associated with this will also need to be paid, which are $120 as of December 2022.

Name Gender Req
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