What could go wrong? Mastercard says transgender customers will no longer have to use legal names

(Image: pxhere)

A new policy unveiled by MasterCard will now allow cardholders to use a name other than the one on their birth certificates.

But the “True Name” card policy is designed for transgender cardholders and those who identify as nonbinary, enabling them to use a name that is different from the one they have on legal documents.

The new policy will “ease a major pain point for the transgender and non-binary community,” MasterCard announced in a news release published on Monday.

“For many in the LGBTQIA+ community, the name on their credit, debit or prepaid card does not reflect their true identity. As a result, for the transgender and non-binary communities in particular, the card in their pocket can serve as a source of sensitivity, misrepresenting their true identity when shopping and going about daily life,” MasterCard said in the statement.

“We are working with partners to create a product, as well as a sensitive and private process free of personal questions, that will allow for true names, not deadnames, to appear on cards without the requirement of a legal name change,” the statement continued, noting that the company unveiled the plan during a panel discussion with the New York City Commission on Human Rights on Monday.

A 2015 study referred to by the company indicated that “32 percent of people who identified as transgender and tried to use a form of ID that did not match either their name or their gender reported being harassed.”

“We are allies of the LGBTQIA+ community, which means if we see a need or if this community is not being served in the most inclusive way, we want to be a force for change to help address and alleviate unnecessary pain points,” Randall Tucker, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for MasterCard said in the news release. “This translates not only for our MasterCard employee community but for our cardholders and the communities in which we operate more broadly. Our vision is that every card should be for everyone.”

Raj Seshadri, president of U.S. issuers at MasterCard, noted that the company is already speaking to banks about how to implement the cards.

“What we’re introducing is a card that represents an individual as who they truly are,” Seshadri told Time. “This is something that should be accessible to everyone in the way they want it and there shouldn’t be any pain in that.”

While the industry and members of the LGBTQ community celebrated the news, many practical Twitter users noted the issues the move creates.


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