11/09/2017 11:39 SAST | Updated 11/09/2017 11:41 SAST

Transgender People Don't Need To End Their Marriages To Change Their Gender: Court

The Western Cape High Court's decision is a landmark ruling.

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A landmark court case has made it possible for transgender people to remain in heterosexual marriages while they change their gender at Home Affairs, Times Live reports.

The Western Cape High Court ruled that the department of Home Affairs infringed on the transgender rights to administrative justice‚ equality and human dignity and was inconsistent with the department's constitutional obligations.

The case by three women, and their spouses, was heard last week. Two of the heterosexual couples were advised to get divorced in order to see their new genders legally come into affect, something they were not prepared to do.

"We are encouraged by the court's decision to ensure that the Alteration of Sex Description Act‚ a law that is crucial in realising the right to identity and equality of transgender persons‚ is implemented in a manner that complies with the Constitution of South Africa and that is respectful of the lived realities of transgender persons in South Africa‚" the Legal Resource Centre said in a statement.

"As the LRC‚ we celebrate our clients' courage in standing up and fighting for their rights to identity‚ bodily integrity and equality."