Soon, there will be an option for trans people to use their chosen names on their debit or credit cards, regardless of their legal name.
Legally changing one’s name can be a costly and difficult process. Many trans people have no choice but to use their deadnames on debit and credit cards, which brings the trauma of dysphoria into everyday transactions. The inconsistency between names can also create confusion or transphobic harassment from others.
Mastercard announced that customers will be able to order debit, credit, and prepaid cards with their chosen names on them. The “True Name” initiative applies to customers with BMO Harris Bank.
“Knowing that something as simple as having the name that you identify with on a card can be such an emotional journey, we want to make it easier for each card to reflect the cardholder,” Randall Tucker, Chief Inclusion Officer at Mastercard, said in June. “Our vision is that every card should be for everyone.”
BMO Harris has 500 branches in eight states and is also available online. The bank will begin issuing debit cards with the true name option in December.
To get a card with their true name, customers will still apply for an account under their legal names. However, all new customers can specify what first name should be printed on their debit cards. Current customers “can visit a branch or contact a call center to request a change. They don’t have to say they are transgender or give a reason,” the New York Times reports.
Superbia Credit Union, the LGBTQ credit union announced earlier this year, will also offer the same option to trans customers. Superbia will open for business in spring 2020.