Citi is now offering True Name credit and debit cards which are created for transgender and nonbinary people, allowing them to use their chosen name instead of their legal names. With a second major bank now backing the True Name program, more customers can now use this feature.
How it works
Transgender and nonbinary people can face scrutiny when using a card that doesn’t reflect their true identity. Nearly one-third of survey respondents who have shown an ID with a name or gender not matching their gender presentation were verbally harassed, denied service, asked to leave, or assaulted, according to the National Center for Transgender Equality.
There’s a punitive financial aspect as well. More than a third of transgender people have not changed their names legally because they cannot afford it, as doing so costs between $100 and $250, although sometimes $1,000 or more, according to the survey.
Mastercard launched True Name in June 2019 to make it easier for transgender and nonbinary people to pay for services without being harassed. When opening an account, a customer will be asked what the first name should be on their debit or credit card—even if they haven’t yet legally changed their name. (Customers will not be asked to identify themselves as transgender or nonbinary to get the True Name card).
Once you enroll, a new card will arrive within the next 4-7 business days. After making the name change, the customer will be addressed by that name whenever they contact the bank online or by phone. If a merchant objects to a credit card that doesn’t match the customer’s ID, they can call the number on the back of the card to verify your identity.
Not all cards are the same
Unfortunately the marketing for this product glosses over the fact that many of Citi’s cards are not eligible for True Name. Per Business Insider, small business and corporate cards are not eligible, along with these co-branded credit cards:
- Shell Fuel Rewards Mastercard
- Wayfair Mastercard
- My Best Buy Visa Card
- L.L.Bean Mastercard
- Shop Your Way Mastercard
- The Brooks Brothers Platinum Mastercard