Its quite strange. After all the fuss of the last twelve months, I look thru my purse, my files and…I’m Jane.
The story so far
No. Of course I’m Jane. What I mean, though, is that at some point in the last two or three months, my documents and stuff stopped being mostly the old me and the odd bit of Jane…or even fifty-fifty… and suddenly, when I wasn’t even noticing, it just swung round.
I have voting, council tax, income tax, NI, VAT, utility bills, full credit history as Jane. I have a bank account and – so long as Barclays don’t muck me about, I will very shortly have a credit card as Jane. I have my own library card, discount cards, Tesco Card, Boots Card…
Basically, if I am knocked down by a truck tomorrow, police going thru my purse would have to conclude that I am, as I should be, Jane Fae – and I just happen to have nicked a solitary bank card from some guy who used to live at my address. Oh, the shame!
I have now reached the point where proving who I used to be is going to be increasingly difficult.
So, what remains? Hmm. Driving license. I am chatting to the DVLA about their documentary requirements and will report back if I get any movement. Passport, which I might put off until I am clearer about whether I want a grc. Er: and mobile phone.
Phone number fees (in every sense)
How silly. I visited the Vodafone shop today and was flabbergasted.
Yep. The woman behind the counter looked me up on screen and tutted a bit about my contract. “Not seen one of these in all the time I’ve been working here”. Oh. Just because I took the contract out in 2001 or thereabouts and, stick in the mud that I am, I never bothered changing…doesn’t mean I’m a Luddite. Or even Luddette.
So, would it pay me to change to a newer contract? Er, yes. I could have more minutes and unlimited texts for a third of what my current contract is costing me. And for LESS than my present phone only contract costs, I could have internet too. My gast is utterly flabbered.
Woman looks shamefacedly at screen: “I’d like to say you were getting some other benefit…but you weren’t”. Oh. So I’m paying approximately £250 per year more than I need to pay for a less good service? Yes.
We chat. I then mention the $64,000 question. Would she change my name on the existing contract. Nope. Not without one of those pesky deed polls. Oh, wonderful. Compared to some places, like the inland revenue, a mobile contract is utterly inconsequential. Nonetheless, mobile companies seem determined to lay claim to a higher standard of documentation than many far more serious organizations.
I feel another court case coming on.
Changing names on your mobile: practical advice
Still, we chatted and worked out that all this security was quite pointless anyway and there were two ways (apart from court challenge) that a trans person can effect a name change without the vile deed poll.
First, I could switch to pay as you go (thereby maintaining my current number). Then I could switch back to contract. It is likely – though not guaranteed – that the old name would be lost in the switch-over.
Second, and even more ludicrous, I could set up a new contract in my name. I need bank account, electoral roll, etc. (see above): and there would be no probs if Jane Fae applied for a new contract.
Then, I would request a transfer of my old number to me. Er. I would go online or on the phone and “prove” one last time I’m my old me. Then they’d ring up Jane and ask her/me if she/I consent to the number being ported to me. Er, right.
I asked if I could do this in the shop: like, if I stand on THIS side I’d be the old me…then I’d move round the desk and be the new me. Or i could wear different hats!
Luckily, they thought it funny. The mad fools! Don’t they know I’m serious? 🙂
So there it is. Two routes to switch mobile number and…I’ll let you know how I get on with Vodafone’s legal department.