Australia: Trans teenagers no longer need judge's approval for hormone therapy, court rules

Teenagers with gender dysphoria will no longer have to apply to a judge to undergo hormone therapy, following a ruling by the Family Court. The court today decided it would no longer intervene in cases where children have the permission of their parents and their treating doctors.

For 14-year-old Isabelle Langley, who was born a boy and is seeking hormone therapy, the ruling has lifted an enormous burden.

"I'm not sure how to express [how I feel]. It makes me immensely happy," Isabelle said.

"[The court process] was stressful having to think about it, and it would be very costly. It was very time consuming, it's a lot of effort which could be put into something else."

Isabelle's parents had hired a lawyer and began gathering medical evidence to justify her decision to live as a girl. But now all she needs to do is consult with her doctors before deciding when she should start hormone treatment.

The court's ruling removes a final legal hurdle for countless other trans children, according to Anna Brown of the Human Rights Law Centre.

"Australia, we think, is the only jurisdiction in the world that had this situation, so we really were an outlier," Ms Brown said. "We had this very bizarre legal anomaly that was really as a result of the case law being applied in a certain way by the Family Court. And really reflecting a lack of understanding about gender dysphoria and a lack of understanding about the medical evidence, which obviously the court has rectified now."

But Ms Brown said children in state care and those whose parents object to their hormone treatment will still have to go to court Read more via ABC