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Gender Reassignment Discrimination

Employment Law

How to prevent gender reassignment discrimination in your business

Gender reassignment discrimination has been unlawful since 1999 and is now a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010.

The law protects your employees who identify as transgender, trans, non-binary, gender-fluid, or other gender identities from discrimination as a result of gender reassignment.

Gender reassignment is defined by the Act as where your employee undergoes, or intends to undergo, a process for the purpose of changing physiological or other attributes of sex. Attributes of sex are broadly defined and can include how your employee chooses to dress or their hairstyle.

Since gender reassignment discrimination law can be complex, it is important that you contact a specialist gender reassignment discrimination lawyer if you believe this may be happening in your workplace or a grievance has been raised.

Types of gender reassignment discrimination

Direct discrimination

Direct gender reassignment discrimination at work occurs where your employee is treated less favourably because they have undergone, or intend to undergo, a process of gender reassignment.

This includes where they are treated less favourably due to absences for gender reassignment than they would be for injury, sickness or any other cause.

Indirect discrimination

Indirect discrimination is where a provision, criterion or practice disadvantages a group, and the individual concerned, unless the practice can be objectively justified.


Harassment is where your employee is subject to unwanted conduct that violates their dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment. It is unlawful regardless of whether or not it is intentional and there is no justification applicable.


Victimisation is where your employee is treated less favourably because they have made, or intend to make, a complaint or allegation of gender reassignment discrimination. It also applies where your employee gives, or intends to give, evidence in support of a complaint of gender reassignment discrimination at work.

Associative Gender Reassignment discrimination

Associative gender reassignment discrimination occurs where your employee is treated unfairly because someone associated with them is undergoing, or plans to undergo, a process of gender reassignment.

Perceived Gender Reassignment discrimination

Discrimination against your employee because they are perceived to be undergoing, or intending to undergo, a process of gender reassignment.

How we help employers to prevent gender reassignment discrimination at work

Our specialist discrimination solicitors can advise on best practice with regards to gender reassignment law. We can help you to prevent gender reassignment in a variety of ways, including providing a tailored equality & diversity policy or training to staff on gender identity and gender reassignment law.

Where there have been allegations of gender reassignment discrimination in the workplace, we can advise on the investigation, grievance and disciplinary procedure involved. We also offer advice on redundancy and Settlement Agreements relating to gender reassignment discrimination, or we can represent you at the Employment Tribunal.

For expert advice on preventing gender reassignment discrimination at work, contact our Employment Law Team on 01273 609911, or email

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