In the case of X, Y and Z v. the United Kingdom (1),

        The European Court of Human Rights, sitting in pursuance of
Rule 51 of Rules of Court A (2), as a Grand Chamber composed of the
following judges:

        Mr  R. Ryssdal, President,
        Mr  R. Bernhardt,
        Mr  Thór Vilhjálmsson,
        Mr  F. Matscher,
        Mr  L.-E. Pettiti,
        Mr  C. Russo,
        Mr  A. Spielmann,
        Mr  J. De Meyer,
        Mr  N. Valticos,
        Mr  I. Foighel,
        Sir John Freeland,
        Mr  A.B. Baka,
        Mr  M.A. Lopes Rocha,
        Mr  J. Makarczyk,
        Mr  D. Gotchev,
        Mr  K. Jungwiert,
        Mr  P. Kuris,
        Mr  U. Lohmus,
        Mr  E. Levits,
        Mr  J. Casadevall,

and also of Mr H. Petzold, Registrar, and Mr P.J. Mahoney, Deputy
Registrar,

        Having deliberated in private on 25 October 1996 and
20 March 1997,

        Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on the
last-mentioned date:
_______________
Notes by the Registrar

1.  The case is numbered 75/1995/581/667.  The first number is the
case's position on the list of cases referred to the Court in the
relevant year (second number).  The last two numbers indicate the
case's position on the list of cases referred to the Court since its
creation and on the list of the corresponding originating applications
to the Commission.

2.  Rules A apply to all cases referred to the Court before the entry
into force of Protocol No. 9 (P9) (1 October 1994) and thereafter only
to cases concerning States not bound by that Protocol (P9).  They
correspond to the Rules that came into force on 1 January 1983, as
amended several times subsequently.
_______________

PROCEDURE

1.      The case was referred to the Court on 13 September 1995 by the
European Commission of Human Rights ("the Commission") within the
three-month period laid down by Article 32 para. 1 and Article 47
(art. 32-1, art. 47) of the Convention for the Protection of
Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms ("the Convention").  It
originated in an application (no. 21830/93) against the United Kingdom
of Great Britain and Northern Ireland lodged with the Commission under
Article 25 (art. 25) by three British citizens, Mr X, Ms Y and Miss Z,
on 6 May 1993.

        The Commission's request referred to Articles 44 and 48
(art. 44, art. 48) and to the declaration whereby the United Kingdom
recognised the compulsory jurisdiction of the Court (Article 46)
(art. 46).  The object of the request was to obtain a decision as to
whether the facts of the case disclosed a breach by the respondent
State of its obligations under Articles 8 and 14 of the Convention
(art. 8, art. 14).

2.      In response to the enquiry made in accordance with Rule 33
para. 3 (d) of Rules of Court A, the applicants stated that they wished
to take part in the proceedings and designated the lawyer who would
represent them (Rule 30).

3.      The Chamber to be constituted included ex officio
Sir John Freeland, the elected judge of British nationality (Article 43
of the Convention) (art. 43), and Mr R. Bernhardt, the Vice-President
of the Court (Rule 21 para. 4 (b)).  On 29 September 1995, in the
presence of the Registrar, the President of the Court, Mr R. Ryssdal,
drew by lot the names of the other seven members, namely
Mr Thór Vilhjálmsson, Mr S.K. Martens, Mr F. Bigi, Mr A.B. Baka,
Mr M.A. Lopes Rocha, Mr J. Makarczyk and Mr U. Lohmus (Article 43
in fine of the Convention and Rule 21 para. 5) (art. 43).
Subsequently, Mr R. Macdonald and Mr N. Valticos, substitute judges,
replaced Mr Bigi, who had died, and Mr Martens, who had resigned
(Rule 22 para. 1).

4.      As President of the Chamber (Rule 21 para. 6), Mr Bernhardt,
acting through the Registrar, consulted the Agent of the
United Kingdom Government ("the Government"), the applicants' lawyer
and the Delegate of the Commission on the organisation of the
proceedings (Rules 37 para. 1 and 38).  Pursuant to the order made in
consequence, the Registrar received the Government's memorial on
2 May 1996 and the applicants' memorial on 3 May 1996.

5.      On 21 May 1996 the President granted leave to
Rights International, a non-governmental human rights organisation
based in New York, to submit written comments (Rule 37 para. 2).  These
were received on 30 June 1996.

6.      In accordance with the President's decision, the hearing took
place in public in the Human Rights Building, Strasbourg, on
27 August 1996.  The Court had held a preparatory meeting beforehand.

        There appeared before the Court:

(a)     for the Government

        Ms S. Dickson, Foreign and Commonwealth Office,        Agent,
        Mr D. Pannick QC,
        Mr R. Singh,                                         Counsel,
        Ms H. Jenn, Department of Health,
        Mr W. Jenkins, Office of Population Censuses
            and Surveys,                                    Advisers;

(b)     for the Commission

        Mr J. Mucha,                                        Delegate;

(c)     for the applicants

        Mr M. Penrose,                                     Solicitor,
        Mr N. Blake,                                         Counsel.

        The Court heard addresses by Mr Mucha, Mr Blake and Mr Pannick,
and also replies to questions put by several of its members.

7.      Following deliberations on 2 September 1996, the Chamber
decided to relinquish jurisdiction forthwith in favour of a
Grand Chamber (Rule 51 para. 1).

8.      The Grand Chamber to be constituted included ex officio the
President and the Vice-President of the Court (Mr Ryssdal and
Mr Bernhardt) as well as the other members and the substitute judges
(namely Mr A. Spielmann and Mr L.-E. Pettiti) of the Chamber which had
relinquished jurisdiction (Rule 51 para. 2 (a) and (b)).  On
2 September 1996, in the presence of the Registrar, the President drew
by lot the names of the nine additional judges called on to complete
the Grand Chamber, namely Mr F. Matscher, Mr B. Walsh, Mr C. Russo,
Mr J. De Meyer, Mr I. Foighel, Mr D. Gotchev, Mr K. Jungwiert,
Mr P. Kuris and Mr J. Casadevall.

9.      Mr Walsh was unable to take part in the further consideration
of the case and was replaced by Mr E. Levits.

10.     Having taken note of the opinions of the Government's Agent,
the applicants' representatives and the Commission's Delegate, the
Grand Chamber decided on 25 October 1996 that it was not necessary to
hold a further hearing following the relinquishment of jurisdiction by
the Chamber (Rule 38 taken together with Rule 51 para. 6).

11.     Subsequently Mr Macdonald was unable to take part in the
further consideration of the case.

AS TO THE FACTS

I.      Circumstances of the case

12.     The applicants are British citizens, resident in Manchester,
England.

        The first applicant, "X", was born in 1955 and works as a
college lecturer.  X is a female-to-male transsexual and will be
referred to throughout this judgment using the male personal pronouns
"he", "him" and "his".

        Since 1979 he has lived in a permanent and stable union with
the second applicant, "Y", a woman born in 1959.  The third applicant,
"Z", was born in 1992 to the second applicant as a result of
artificial insemination by donor ("AID").  Y has subsequently given
birth to a second child by the same method.

13.     X was born with a female body.  However, from the age of four
he felt himself to be a sexual misfit and was drawn to "masculine"
roles of behaviour.  This discrepancy caused him to suffer suicidal
depression during adolescence.

        In 1975, he started to take hormone treatment and to live and
work as a man.  In 1979, he began living with Y and later that year he
underwent gender reassignment surgery, having been accepted for
treatment after counselling and psychological testing.

14.     In 1990, X and Y applied through their general practitioner
("GP") for AID.  They were interviewed by a specialist in January 1991
with a view to obtaining treatment and their application was referred
to a hospital ethics committee, supported by two references and a
letter from their GP.  It was, however, refused.

15.     They appealed, making representations which included reference
to a research study in which it was reported that in a study of
thirty-seven children raised by transsexual or homosexual parents or
carers, there was no evidence of abnormal sexual orientation or any
other adverse effect (R. Green, "Sexual identity of 37 children raised
by homosexual or transsexual parents", American Journal of Psychiatry,
1978, vol. 135, pp. 692-97).

        In November 1991, the hospital ethics committee agreed to
provide treatment as requested by the applicants.  They asked X to
acknowledge himself to be the father of the child within the meaning
of the Human Fertility and Embryology Act 1990 (see paragraph 21
below).

16.     On 30 January 1992, Y was impregnated through AID treatment
with sperm from an anonymous donor.  X was present throughout the
process.  Z was born on 13 October 1992.

17.     In February 1992, X had enquired of the Registrar General
(see paragraph 22 below) whether there was an objection to his being
registered as the father of Y's child.  In a reply dated 4 June 1992
to X's Member of Parliament, the Minister of Health replied that,
having taken legal advice, the Registrar General was of the view that
only a biological man could be regarded as a father for the purposes
of registration.  It was pointed out that the child could lawfully bear
X's surname and, subject to the relevant conditions, X would be
entitled to an additional personal tax allowance if he could show that
he provided financial support to the child.

18.     Nonetheless, following Z's birth, X and Y attempted to register
the child in their joint names as mother and father.  However, X was
not permitted to be registered as the child's father and that part of
the register was left blank.  Z was given X's surname in the register
(see paragraph 24 below).

19.     In November 1995, X's existing job contract came to an end and
he applied for approximately thirty posts.  The only job offer which
he received was from a university in Botswana.  The conditions of
service included accommodation and free education for the dependants
of the employee.  However, X decided not to accept the job when he was
informed by a Botswanan official that only spouses and biological or
adopted children would qualify as "dependants".  He subsequently
obtained another job in Manchester where he continues to work.

II.     Relevant domestic law and practice

    A.  Definition of gender in domestic law

20.     English law defines a person's sex by reference to
biological criteria at birth and does not recognise that it can be
changed by gender reassignment surgery (Corbett v. Corbett [1971]
Probate Reports 83 and R. v. Tan [1983] Queen's Bench Reports 1053
(Court of Appeal)).

        As a result of this principle, a female-to-male transsexual is
not permitted to marry a woman and cannot be regarded as the father of
a child.

    B.  Children conceived by artificial insemination

21.     The Human Fertility and Embryology Act 1990 ("the 1990 Act")
provides, inter alia, that where an unmarried woman gives birth as a
result of AID with the involvement of her male partner, the latter,
rather than the donor of the sperm, shall be treated for legal purposes
as the father of the child (section 28 (3)).

    C.  Registration of births

22.     Section 1 (1) of the Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953
("the 1953 Act") requires that certain prescribed details concerning
the birth of every child born in England and Wales, including the names
of the parents, be entered in a register.  The Registrar General is the
official ultimately responsible for the administration of this scheme.

23.     If the child's father (or the person regarded by law as the
father - see paragraph 21 above) is not married to the mother, his name
shall not automatically be entered on the register in the space
provided for the father.  However, it will be entered if he and the
mother jointly request that this be done (section 10 of the 1953 Act,
as amended by the Family Law Reform Act 1987).

24.     A birth certificate takes the form either of an authenticated
copy of the entry in the register of births or an extract from it.  A
certificate of the latter kind, known as a "short certificate of
birth", is in a prescribed form and contains such particulars as are
prescribed by regulations made under the 1953 Act.  These particulars
are the name, surname, sex and date and place of birth of the
individual concerned.  Under English law, a child may be given any
first name or surname as the parents see fit, and may change his or her
name or surname at any time, without restriction.

    D.  Parental responsibility

25.     "Parental responsibility" in respect of a child automatically
vests in the mother and, where she is married, in her husband.  It may,
additionally, be granted to certain other persons (see paragraphs 26-27
below).

        "Parental responsibility" means all the rights, duties, powers,
responsibility and authority which by law a parent of a child has in
relation to the child and his or her property (section 3 of the
Children Act 1989 - "the 1989 Act").

        It does not, without more, confer on the child any rights in
the property of the person granted parental responsibility, such as the
right to inherit on intestacy or to financial support.  Similarly, it
does not entitle the child to benefit through that person from the
transmission of tenancies pursuant to certain statutory provisions,
from nationality and immigration measures or from rights accruing from
that person's citizenship in the European Union.

26.     The father of a child who was not married to the mother at the
time of the birth may apply for a court order granting him parental
responsibility or may attain it by virtue of an agreement, in a
prescribed form, with the mother (section 4 of the 1989 Act).

27.     Parental responsibility cannot vest in any other person, unless
a "residence order" in respect of the child is made in his or her
favour.

        A residence order is "an order settling the arrangements to be
made as to the person with whom the child is to live" (section 8 of the
1989 Act).  Any person may apply for such an order (although
individuals outside certain defined categories must first seek the
leave of the court in order to apply).

        Where the court makes a residence order in respect of any
person who is not the parent or guardian of the child, that person is
automatically vested with parental responsibility for the child as long
as the residence order remains in force (section 12 (2) of the
1989 Act).

28.     Thus, although the first applicant could not apply directly for
parental responsibility of the third applicant, he could apply with the
second applicant for a joint residence order which would have the
effect of giving him parental responsibility while it remained in
force.  On 24 June 1994, Mr Justice Douglas-Brown in the
Manchester High Court made a joint residence order in favour of
two cohabiting lesbian women in respect of the child of one of them
(unreported).

PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE COMMISSION

29.     In their application to the Commission of 6 May 1993
(no. 21830/93) as declared admissible, the applicants complained that,
contrary to Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8), they were denied
respect for their family and private life as a result of the lack of
recognition of the first applicant's role as father to the
third applicant and that the resulting situation in which they were
placed was discriminatory, in violation of Articles 8 and 14 taken
together (art. 14+8).

30.     On 1 December 1994, the Commission declared admissible the
complaints under Articles 8 and 14 of the Convention (art. 8, art. 14),
and declared inadmissible complaints under Articles 12 and 13 (art. 12,
art. 13).  In its report of 27 June 1995 (Article 31) (art. 31), it
expressed the opinion that there had been a violation of Article 8 of
the Convention (art. 8) (thirteen votes to five) and that it was not
necessary to examine whether there had been a violation of Article 14
in conjunction with Article 8 (art. 14+8) (seventeen votes to one).
The full text of the Commission's opinion and of the five separate
opinions contained in the report are reproduced as an annex to this
judgment (1).
_______________
Note by the Registrar

1.  For practical reasons this annex will appear only with the printed
version of the judgment (in Reports of Judgments and
Decisions 1997-II), but a copy of the Commission's report is obtainable
from the registry.
_______________

FINAL SUBMISSIONS TO THE COURT

31.     At the hearing on 27 August 1996 the Government, as they had
done in their memorial, asked the Court to hold that there had been no
violation of Articles 8 or 14 of the Convention (art. 8, art. 14).

        On the same occasion, the applicants requested the Court to
reach a finding of violation and to award them just satisfaction under
Article 50 (art. 50).

AS TO THE LAW

I.      ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 8 OF THE CONVENTION (art. 8)

32.     The applicants, with whom the Commission agreed, submitted that
the lack of legal recognition of the relationship between X and Z
amounted to a violation of Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8), which
provides:

        "1. Everyone has the right to respect for his private and
        family life, his home and his correspondence.

        2.  There shall be no interference by a public authority with
        the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance
        with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the
        interests of national security, public safety or the
        economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of
        disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or
        for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others."

        The Government denied that Article 8 (art. 8) was applicable
and, in the alternative, claimed that there had been no violation.

    A.  The existence of "family life"

33.     The applicants submitted that they had shared a "family life"
within the meaning of Article 8 (art. 8) since Z's birth.  They
emphasised that, according to the jurisprudence of the Commission and
the Court, social reality, rather than formal legal status, was
decisive.  Thus, it was important to note that X had irrevocably
changed many of his physical characteristics and provided financial and
emotional support to Y and Z.  To all appearances, the applicants lived
as a traditional family.

34.     The Government did not accept that the concept of "family life"
applied to the relationships between X and Y or X and Z.  They reasoned
that X and Y had to be treated as two women living together, because
X was still regarded as female under domestic law and a complete change
of sex was not medically possible.  Case-law of the Commission
indicated that a "family" could not be based on two unrelated persons
of the same sex, including a lesbian couple (see the Commission's
decisions on admissibility in X and Y v. the United Kingdom,
application no. 9369/81, Decisions and Reports 32, p. 220, and
Kerkhoven and Others v. the Netherlands, application no. 15666/89).
Nor could X be said to enjoy "family life" with Z since he was not
related to the child by blood, marriage or adoption.

        At the hearing before the Court, counsel for the Government
accepted that if X and Y applied for and were granted a joint residence
order in respect of Z (see paragraph 27 above), it would be difficult
to maintain that there was no "family life" for the purposes of
Article 8 (art. 8).

35.     The Commission considered that the relationship between X and
Y could not be equated with that of a lesbian couple, since X was
living in society as a man, having undergone gender reassignment
surgery.  Aside from the fact that X was registered at birth as a woman
and was therefore under a legal incapacity to marry Y or be registered
as Z's father, the applicants' situation was indistinguishable from the
traditional notion of "family life".

36.     The Court recalls that the notion of "family life" in Article 8
(art. 8) is not confined solely to families based on marriage and may
encompass other de facto relationships (see the Marckx v. Belgium
judgment of 13 June 1979, Series A no. 31, p. 14, para. 31; the Keegan
v. Ireland judgment of 26 May 1994, Series A no. 290, p. 17, para. 44;
and the Kroon and Others v. the Netherlands judgment of
27 October 1994, Series A no. 297-C, pp. 55-56, para. 30).  When
deciding whether a relationship can be said to amount to "family life",
a number of factors may be relevant, including whether the couple live
together, the length of their relationship and whether they have
demonstrated their commitment to each other by having children together
or by any other means (see, for example, the above-mentioned
Kroon and Others judgment, loc. cit.).

37.     In the present case, the Court notes that X is a transsexual
who has undergone gender reassignment surgery.  He has lived with Y,
to all appearances as her male partner, since 1979.  The couple applied
jointly for, and were granted, treatment by AID to allow Y to have a
child.  X was involved throughout that process and has acted as Z's
"father" in every respect since the birth (see paragraphs 14-16 above).
In these circumstances, the Court considers that de facto family ties
link the three applicants.

        It follows that Article 8 is applicable (art. 8).

    B.  Compliance with Article 8 (art. 8)

        1.  The arguments as to the applicable general principles

38.     The applicants pointed out that the Court had recognised in its
Rees v. the United Kingdom judgment (17 October 1986, Series A
no. 106, p. 19, para. 47), that the need for appropriate legal measures
affecting transsexuals should be kept under review having regard in
particular to scientific and societal developments.  They maintained
that there had been significant development since that decision: in
particular, the European Parliament and the Parliamentary Assembly of
the Council of Europe had called for comprehensive recognition of
transsexual identity (Resolution OJ 1989 C256 and Recommendation 1117
of 29 September 1989 respectively); the Court of Justice of the
European Communities had decided that the dismissal of a transsexual
for a reason related to gender reassignment amounted to discrimination
contrary to Community Directive 76/207
(P. v. S. and Cornwall County Council, C-13/94, 30 April 1996); and
scientific research had been published which suggested that
transsexuality was not merely a psychological disorder, but had a
physiological basis in the structure of the brain (see, for example,
"Biological Aspects of Transsexualism" by Professor L.J.G. Gooren,
Council of Europe document no. CJ-DE/XXIII (93) 5, and Zhou, Hofman,
Gooren and Swaab, "A sex difference in the human brain and its relation
to transsexuality", Nature, 2 November 1995, vol. 378, p. 68).  These
developments made it appropriate for the Court to re-examine the
principles underlying its decisions in the above-mentioned Rees case
and in Cossey v. the United Kingdom (27 September 1990, Series A
no. 184), in so far as they had an impact on the present problem.  The
Court should now hold that the notion of respect for family and/or
private life required States to recognise the present sexual identity
of post-operative transsexuals for legal purposes, including
parental rights.

        However, they also emphasised that the issue in their case was
very different from that in Rees and Cossey, since X was not seeking
to amend his own birth certificate but rather to be named in Z's birth
certificate as her father.  They submitted that the margin of
appreciation afforded to the respondent State should be narrower in
such a case and the need for positive action to ensure respect much
stronger, having regard to the interests of the child in having her
social father recognised as such by law.

39.     The Government contended that Contracting States enjoyed a wide
margin of appreciation in relation to the complex issues raised by
transsexuality, in view of the lack of a uniform approach to the
problem and the transitional state of the law.  They denied that there
had been any significant change in the scientific or legal position
with regard to transsexuals: despite recent research, there still
remained uncertainty as to the essential nature of the condition and
there was not yet any sufficiently broad consensus between the
member States of the Council of Europe (see, for example, the
Report of the Proceedings of the XXIIIrd Colloquy on European Law,
Transsexualism, Medicine and the Law, Council of Europe, 1993, and
S.M. Breedlove, "Another Important Organ", Nature, 2 November 1995,
vol. 378, p. 15).  The judgment of the Court of Justice of the
European Communities in P. v. S. and Cornwall County Council (cited at
paragraph 38 above) did not assist the applicants because it was not
concerned with the extent to which a State was obliged to recognise a
person's change of sex for legal purposes.

        Like the applicants, the Government stressed that the
present case was not merely concerned with transsexuality.  Since it
also raised difficult and novel questions relating to the treatment of
children born by AID, the State should enjoy a very broad margin of
appreciation.

40.     The Commission referred to a clear trend within the
Contracting States towards the legal recognition of gender
reassignment.  It took the view that, in the case of a transsexual who
had undergone gender reassignment surgery in the Contracting State and
who lived there as part of a family relationship, there had to be a
presumption in favour of legal recognition of that relationship, the
denial of which required special justification.

        2.  The Court's general approach

41.     The Court reiterates that, although the essential object of
Article 8 (art. 8) is to protect the individual against arbitrary
interferences by the public authorities, there may in addition be
positive obligations inherent in an effective respect for private or
family life.  The boundaries between the State's positive and negative
obligations under this provision (art. 8) do not always lend themselves
to precise definition; nonetheless, the applicable principles are
similar.  In both contexts, regard must be had to the fair balance that
has to be struck between the competing interests of the individual and
of the community as a whole, and in both cases the State enjoys a
certain margin of appreciation (see, for example, the above-mentioned
Rees judgment, p. 14, para. 35, and the above-mentioned
Kroon and Others judgment, p. 56, para. 31).

42.     The present case is distinguishable from the previous cases
concerning transsexuals which have been brought before the Court
(see the above-mentioned Rees judgment, the above-mentioned
Cossey judgment and the B. v. France judgment of 25 March 1992,
Series A no. 232-C), because here the applicants' complaint is not that
the domestic law makes no provision for the recognition of the
transsexual's change of identity, but rather that it is not possible
for such a person to be registered as the father of a child; indeed,
it is for this reason that the Court is examining this case in relation
to family, rather than private, life (see paragraph 37 above).

43.     It is true that the Court has held in the past that where the
existence of a family tie with a child has been established, the State
must act in a manner calculated to enable that tie to be developed and
legal safeguards must be established that render possible, from the
moment of birth or as soon as practicable thereafter, the child's
integration in his family (see for example the above-mentioned
Marckx judgment, p. 15, para. 31; the Johnston and Others v. Ireland
judgment of 18 December 1986, Series A no. 112, p. 29, para. 72; the
above-mentioned Keegan judgment, p. 19, para. 50; and the
above-mentioned Kroon and Others judgment, p. 56, para. 32).  However,
hitherto in this context it has been called upon to consider only
family ties existing between biological parents and their offspring.
The present case raises different issues, since Z was conceived by AID
and is not related, in the biological sense, to X, who is a
transsexual.

44.     The Court observes that there is no common European standard
with regard to the granting of parental rights to transsexuals.  In
addition, it has not been established before the Court that there
exists any generally shared approach amongst the
High Contracting Parties with regard to the manner in which the social
relationship between a child conceived by AID and the person who
performs the role of father should be reflected in law.  Indeed,
according to the information available to the Court, although the
technology of medically assisted procreation has been available in
Europe for several decades, many of the issues to which it gives rise,
particularly with regard to the question of filiation, remain the
subject of debate.  For example, there is no consensus amongst the
member States of the Council of Europe on the question whether the
interests of a child conceived in such a way are best served by
preserving the anonymity of the donor of the sperm or whether the child
should have the right to know the donor's identity.

        Since the issues in the case, therefore, touch on areas where
there is little common ground amongst the member States of the
Council of Europe and, generally speaking, the law appears to be in a
transitional stage, the respondent State must be afforded a wide margin
of appreciation (see, mutatis mutandis, the above mentioned
Rees judgment, p. 15, para. 37, and the above-mentioned
Cossey judgment, p. 16, para. 40).

        3.  Whether a fair balance was struck in the instant case

45.     The applicants, with whom the Commission agreed, argued that
a number of consequences flowed from the lack of legal recognition of
X's role as father.  Perhaps most importantly, the child's sense of
security within the family might be undermined.  Furthermore, the
absence of X's name on her birth certificate might cause distress on
those occasions when a full-length certificate had to be produced, for
example on registration with a doctor or school, if an insurance policy
was taken out on her life or when she applied for a passport.  Although
Z was a British citizen by birth and could trace connection through her
mother in immigration and nationality matters, problems could still
arise if X sought to work abroad.  For example, he had already had to
turn down an offer of employment in Botswana because he had been
informed that Y and Z would not have been recognised as his
"dependants" and would not, therefore, have been entitled to receive
certain benefits (see paragraph 19 above).  Moreover, in contrast to
the position where a parent-child relationship was recognised by law,
Z could not inherit from X on intestacy or succeed to certain tenancies
on X's death.  The possibility of X obtaining a residence order in
respect of Z (see paragraph 27 above) did not satisfy the requirement
of respect, since this would entail the incurring of legal expense and
an investigation by a court welfare officer which might distress the
child.

        In their submission, it was apparent that the legal recognition
sought would not interfere with the rights of others or require any
fundamental reorganisation of the United Kingdom system of registration
of births, since the Human Fertility and Embryology Act 1990 allowed
a man who was not a transsexual to be registered as the father of a
child born to his female partner by AID (see paragraph 21 above).

46.     The Government pointed out that the applicants were not
restrained in any way from living together as a "family" and they
asserted that the concerns expressed by them were highly theoretical.
Furthermore, X and Y could jointly apply for a residence order,
conferring on them parental rights and duties in relation to Z
(see paragraph 27 above).

47.     First, the Court observes that the community as a whole has an
interest in maintaining a coherent system of family law which places
the best interests of the child at the forefront.  In this respect, the
Court notes that, whilst it has not been suggested that the amendment
to the law sought by the applicants would be harmful to the interests
of Z or of children conceived by AID in general, it is not clear that
it would necessarily be to the advantage of such children.

        In these circumstances, the Court considers that the State may
justifiably be cautious in changing the law, since it is possible that
the amendment sought might have undesirable or unforeseen ramifications
for children in Z's position.  Furthermore, such an amendment might
have implications in other areas of family law.  For example, the law
might be open to criticism on the ground of inconsistency if a
female-to-male transsexual were granted the possibility of becoming a
"father" in law while still being treated for other legal purposes as
female and capable of contracting marriage to a man.

48.     Against these general interests, the Court must weigh the
disadvantages suffered by the applicants as a result of the refusal to
recognise X in law as Z's "father".

        The applicants identify a number of legal consequences flowing
from this lack of recognition (see paragraph 45 above).  For example,
they point to the fact that if X were to die intestate, Z would have
no automatic right of inheritance.  The Court notes, however, that the
problem could be solved in practice if X were to make a will.  No
evidence has been adduced to show that X is the beneficiary of any
transmissible tenancies of the type referred to; similarly, since Z is
a British citizen by birth and can trace connection through her mother
in immigration and nationality matters, she will not be disadvantaged
in this respect by the lack of a legal relationship with X.

        The Court considers, therefore, that these legal consequences
would be unlikely to cause undue hardship given the facts of the
present case.

49.     In addition, the applicants claimed that Z might suffer various
social or developmental difficulties.  Thus, it was argued that she
would be caused distress on those occasions when it was necessary to
produce her birth certificate.

        In relation to the absence of X's name on the
birth certificate, the Court notes, first, that unless X and Y choose
to make such information public, neither the child nor any third party
will know that this absence is a consequence of the fact that X was
born female.  It follows that the applicants are in a similar position
to any other family where, for whatever reason, the person who performs
the role of the child's "father" is not registered as such.  The Court
does not find it established that any particular stigma still attaches
to children or families in such circumstances.

        Secondly, the Court recalls that in the United Kingdom a
birth certificate is not in common use for administrative or
identification purposes and that there are few occasions when it is
necessary to produce a full length certificate (see paragraph 24
above).

50.     The applicants were also concerned, more generally, that Z's
sense of personal identity and security within her family would be
affected by the lack of legal recognition of X as father.

        In this respect, the Court notes that X is not prevented in any
way from acting as Z's father in the social sense.  Thus, for example,
he lives with her, providing emotional and financial support to her and
Y, and he is free to describe himself to her and others as her "father"
and to give her his surname (see paragraph 24 above).  Furthermore,
together with Y, he could apply for a joint residence order in respect
of Z, which would automatically confer on them full parental
responsibility for her in English law (see paragraph 27 above).

51.     It is impossible to predict the extent to which the absence of
a legal connection between X and Z will affect the latter's
development.  As previously mentioned, at the present time there
is uncertainty with regard to how the interests of children in Z's
position can best be protected (see paragraph 44 above) and the Court
should not adopt or impose any single viewpoint.

52.     In conclusion, given that transsexuality raises complex
scientific, legal, moral and social issues, in respect of which there
is no generally shared approach among the Contracting States, the Court
is of the opinion that Article 8 (art. 8) cannot, in this context, be
taken to imply an obligation for the respondent State formally to
recognise as the father of a child a person who is not the biological
father.  That being so, the fact that the law of the United Kingdom
does not allow special legal recognition of the relationship between
X and Z does not amount to a failure to respect family life within the
meaning of that provision (art. 8).

        It follows that there has been no violation of Article 8 of the
Convention (art. 8).

II.     ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 14 OF THE CONVENTION TAKEN IN
        CONJUNCTION WITH ARTICLE 8 (art. 14+8)

53.     In addition, the applicants complained of discrimination
contrary to Article 14 of the Convention (art. 14), which provides:

        "The enjoyment of the rights and freedoms set forth in [the]
        Convention shall be secured without discrimination on any
        ground such as sex, race, colour, language, religion,
        political or other opinion, national or social origin,
        association with a national minority, property, birth or other
        status."

54.     The applicants did not develop this complaint in their
memorial, since they adopted the findings of the Commission
(see paragraph 55 below).  However, at the hearing before the Court,
their counsel referred in particular to the fact that had X been born
a man he could have been registered as Z's father under the provisions
of the Human Fertility and Embryology Act 1990 (see paragraph 21
above).

55.     The Government submitted that no separate issue arose in
connection with Article 14 (art. 14).  In view of its finding of a
violation of Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8), the Commission did
not find it necessary to examine this complaint.

56.     The Court considers that the complaint under Article 14
(art. 14) is tantamount to a restatement of the complaint under
Article 8 (art. 8), and raises no separate issue.  In view of its
finding in respect of the latter provision (art. 8) (see paragraph 52
above), there is no need to examine the issue again in the context of
Article 14 (art. 14).

        Accordingly, it is not necessary to consider this complaint.

FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT

1.      Holds unanimously that Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8) is
        applicable in the present case;

2.      Holds by fourteen votes to six that there has been no
        violation of Article 8 (art. 8);

3.      Holds by seventeen votes to three that it is not necessary to
        consider the complaint under Article 14 of the Convention
        taken in conjunction with Article 8 (art. 14+8).

        Done in English and in French, and delivered at a public
hearing in the Human Rights Building, Strasbourg, on 22 April 1997.

Signed: Rolv RYSSDAL
        President

Signed: Herbert PETZOLD
        Registrar

        In accordance with Article 51 para. 2 of the Convention
(art. 51-2) and Rule 53 para. 2 of Rules of Court A, the following
separate opinions are annexed to this judgment:

        (a) concurring opinion of Mr Pettiti;
        (b) concurring opinion of Mr De Meyer;
        (c) partly dissenting opinion of Mr Casadevall, joined by
Mr Russo and Mr Makarczyk;
        (d) dissenting opinion of Mr Thór Vilhjálmsson;
        (e) dissenting opinion of Mr Foighel;
        (f) dissenting opinion of Mr Gotchev.

Initialled: R. R.

Initialled: H. P.

                  CONCURRING OPINION OF JUDGE PETTITI

                             (Translation)

        I voted with the majority for the finding that there was no
violation of Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8).  However, I consider
that the impact of the judgment could have been strengthened by
expanding the reasoning and adopting different wording in a number of
places.

        The text adopted seems to me to be based too much on the
personal demands of X and Y alone, which are specific to their
individual situations, and on a weighing of the practical and social
advantages and disadvantages which might result from changing, or not
changing, Z's civil status.  As this is the first case in which the
European Court has had to deal with both transsexualism and the problem
of a child's right to know his biological origins, it should, in my
opinion, have given more thought to the assessment of family life
within the meaning of Article 8 (art. 8) and to the conflict of
interests between parents and children.

        Moreover, the instant case concerned a couple, X and Y,
composed of a post-operative transsexual and a woman who had produced
the child Z as a result of artificial insemination by anonymous donor.

        Did X, Y and Z form a family?  A family, in general, cannot be
a mere aggregate of the individuals living under one roof.  The ethical
and social dimension of a family cannot be ignored or underestimated.
If there was a family, as there appears to have been in the case before
the Court, can the object sought by X be imposed on Z?

        Studies have shown that not all transsexuals have the same
aptitude for family life (after an authorised operation) as a
non-transsexual (see the joint research by Alby et al.,
International Freudian Association, "Sexual identity and transsexuals",
and the study by L. Pettiti, "Les transsexuels", Que sais-je?,
Presses universitaires de France).

        The X, Y and Z case touched upon the conflict between the
demand of a female-to-male transsexual (X) to be registered as the
father of his female cohabitee's child and the demand which could in
due course be made by Z, who might sooner or later come to consider
that her own interest lies in finding out who her biological father
was.  The Court should therefore also have assessed the conflict
between family law, the law of filiation and the direct effect of the
United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which it did
not refer.

        Should there be another case like this one, it would no doubt
be desirable for the Commission and the Court to suggest to the parties
that a lawyer be instructed specifically to represent the interests of
the child alone.

        The growing number of precarious and unstable family situations
is creating new difficulties for children of first and second families,
whether legitimate, natural, successive or superimposed, and will
in the future call for thoughtful consideration of the identity of the
family and the meaning of the family life which Article 8 (art. 8) is
intended to protect, taking into account the fact that priority must
be given to the interests of the child and its future.  In the
particular case of X, Y and Z, the consequences of finding a violation
could already be gauged, namely the ambivalent situation which could
result from a female-to-male transsexual being registered as a father
while being considered under British law to be of female sex and
registered as such in the register of births, marriages and deaths
(see paragraph 47 of the judgment).

        In the Cossey v. the United Kingdom and B. v. France cases, the
Court, and its judges in their separate opinions, emphasised the
civil-law problems raised by transsexualism and the knock-on effects
of a change of civil status on the right to marriage, divorce, the law
of succession, the law of adoption, etc.

        The Court's conclusions (see paragraphs 47, 51 and 52 of the
present judgment) were therefore justified and prudent, but could in
my opinion have been supplemented by a legal, sociological and ethical
examination of the whole problem and the diversity of the rights and
values to be attributed to each of the persons who go to make up a
family.

                 CONCURRING OPINION OF JUDGE DE MEYER

I.      Applicability of Article 8 (art. 8)

        I would observe that, as far as X is concerned, this case
should have been dealt with from the point of view of private, rather
than family, life.

        There is certainly family life between Y and Z.  However,
between X and the two other applicants there is only the "appearances"
of "family ties" (1), which, of course, concern the private life of the
three applicants.
_______________
1.  Paragraphs 33 and 37 of the judgment.
_______________

II.     Compliance with Article 8 (art. 8)

        There was no reason to refer, once again, to a so-called
"margin of appreciation" enjoyed by the State (2).  It was enough to
recognise that, in not allowing X to be registered as Z's father, the
respondent State had not "acted arbitrarily or unreasonably or failed
to strike a fair balance between the respective interests"
involved (3).
_______________
2.  Paragraphs 41 and 44 of the judgment.  See also section III of my
opinion in the recent case of Z v. Finland, judgment of
25 February 1997, Reports of Judgments and Decisions 1997-II.

3.  Velosa Barreto v. Portugal judgment of 21 November 1995, Series A
no. 334, p. 12, para. 30.
_______________

        There was also no need to consider that, on the issues at
stake, there is no "common European standard", or no "common ground",
"generally shared approach", or "consensus amongst the member States
of the Council of Europe", or that these issues "remain the subject of
debate", or that the law of member States concerning them "appears to
be in a transitional stage" (4).  Nor was it helpful to remark that
something "is impossible to predict", or that "there is uncertainty
with regard to" a certain question (5).  Nothing of that kind was
relevant.  All we had to do was to identify the principles which, in
our view, had to be applied and the rules to be observed.
_______________
4.  Paragraphs 44 and 52 of the judgment.

5.  Paragraph 51 of the judgment.
_______________

        These principles and rules are quite simple.  Indeed, it is
self-evident that a person who is manifestly not the father of a child
has no right to be recognised as her father.

            PARTLY DISSENTING OPINION OF JUDGE CASADEVALL,
                 JOINED BY JUDGES RUSSO AND MAKARCZYK

                             (Translation)

1.      The majority did not see fit to depart from the Court's
existing case-law, in particular the Rees and Cossey judgments
(notwithstanding the B. v. France judgment).  Although the underlying
problem remains the same (sexual dysphoria and sex changes), I consider
that the present case has important distinguishing features which could
justify a decision that there has been a violation of Article 8
(art. 8) taken separately without that decision entailing a complete
reversal of the Court's case-law.

2.      The subject is certainly a sensitive one and it raises numerous
moral and ethical problems.  But it is no less certain that more and
more States (at present nearly half the members of the
Council of Europe) are taking steps to adapt and harmonise their
legislation with a view to full legal recognition of the new identity
of those who have had sex-change operations (in accordance with the
relevant regulations and under the supervision of medical and ethical
committees) so as to alleviate, as far as possible, the distress some
human beings are suffering (see the resolution adopted by the
European Parliament on 12 September 1989 and the recommendation of the
Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe of 29 September 1989).

3.      Equally certainly, every State has a legitimate right to
regulate such matters according to the aspirations of its people and
its legal system, and in doing so has a "margin of appreciation" which
varies from field to field.  That means that it must not go beyond the
limits imposed by respect for the fundamental rights guaranteed by the
Convention.

4.      The considerations set out in Judge Martens's dissenting
opinion in the Cossey case remain wholly applicable to the
present case.  When a person has undergone gruelling medical treatment,
hormone therapy and dangerous surgery, and when his physiological sex
has been brought into harmony, as far as possible, with his
psychological sex, it is right and proper for his new identity to be
recognised not only by society but also in law.  "... refusal [of such
recognition] can only be qualified as cruel."

5.      I think the present case is more complex than the earlier Rees
and Cossey cases (i) because it concerns three people, (ii) because it
is as much about private life as family life for the purposes of
Article 8 (art. 8), and (iii) having regard to the following facts:

        (a) After suffering since childhood from sexual dysphoria
X underwent hormone therapy in 1975 and began to live and work as a man
(see paragraph 13 of the judgment).

        (b) Four years later he began to live with a woman, Y, and was
then after going through the required procedure and undergoing
psychological tests, given permission to have a sex-change operation.
According to the applicants, the operation may be financed by the
United Kingdom National Health Service.

        (c) After an initial refusal and appeal the hospital ethics
committee gave the go-ahead and X and Y were given permission for
treatment with a view to artificial insemination by anonymous donor
(see paragraph 15 of the judgment).

        (d) Previously, X had been asked to make an acknowledgment of
paternity pursuant to section 28 (3) of the Human Fertility and
Embryology Act 1990, which provides: "where a man, who is not married
to the mother, is party to the treatment which results in the sperm
being placed in the woman, he shall be deemed to be the father of the
child".

        (e) X gave his agreement and his support, Y was impregnated and
Z was born in 1992; Z has lived since then with X and Y, who act as her
parents (see paragraphs 16-19 of the judgment).

        (f) In reply to the registration request, the
Minister of Health informed X that only a biological male could be
regarded as the father for the purposes of registration
(see paragraph 17 of the judgment).

6.      I accordingly summarise the problem in two essential points,
on which I base my opinion.

        The first concerns the concept of "family life".  It seems to
me undeniable that the relationship which binds the three applicants
together, in their own experience and as perceived by society (Y is Z's
mother and X publicly assumes the roles of male partner and father),
permits the finding that they enjoy real family life, which, according
to the Court, "... is not confined solely to marriage-based
relationships and may encompass other de facto 'family' ties where the
parties are living together outside of marriage" (see the Keegan
v. Ireland judgment of 26 May 1994, Series A no. 290, p. 17, para. 44).

        It should be noted that when, at the hearing, Judge Makarczyk
asked Mr Pannick, the Government's counsel, if the Government would
have changed its position on the question of family life if the
applicants had requested and obtained a joint residence order, he was
given the following answer: "... it would be very difficult indeed for
the United Kingdom then to submit to this Court that there is no
family life for the purposes of Article 8 (art. 8)" (see the
verbatim record of the hearing, p. 30).

        The second point - having regard to the facts of the case and
the principle of legal certainty and even foreseeability - is that
since the State permitted X to undergo hormone treatment and then,
after he had gone through the required procedure and undergone
psychological tests, permitted and even financed irreversible surgery,
issued documents mentioning his new sexual identity and authorised Y
(after an acknowledgment of paternity prescribed by law had been
obtained from X) to undergo artificial insemination which led to the
birth of Z and a second child since, it must accept the consequences
and take all the measures needed to enable the applicants to live
normal lives, without discrimination, under their new identity and with
respect for their right to private and family life.

7.      For these reasons, I conclude that there has been a violation
of Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8).

             DISSENTING OPINION OF JUDGE THÓR VILHJÁLMSSON

        Article 8 (art. 8) is applicable in this case.  On this point
I share the opinion of the Court which is set out in the judgment.

        As stated in paragraph 21 of the judgment, the 1990 Act
provides that in the United Kingdom the male partner of a woman who
gives birth to a child as a result of AID shall be treated for
legal purposes as the father of the child.  This rule was not applied
in the present case because the partner of the mother is a
female-to-male transsexual.  Had X been born a man, he would have been
registered as the father of the child Z.

        The case at hand differs from the Cossey case and the
Rees case, and for me it is an important difference that the State is
not in this case requested to change entries in the register that were
correct when they were made.  Under United Kingdom law it is now
possible for the register to contain statements that are not in
conformity with biological facts but are based on legal considerations
(see paragraph 21).  For this reason I have not found it difficult to
come to the conclusion that X had, under Article 8 of the Convention
(art. 8), a right to be registered as the father of Z.  This was not
accepted in the United Kingdom.  I am of the opinion that this showed
lack of respect for the applicants' family life.  This is, I find, just
as true in respect of Z as of X and Y.  In a country where it is laid
down by legislation that the partner of a mother who gives birth to a
child as a result of AID can be registered as the father, it is
obviously accepted that the family ties between all concerned are of
importance.  I fail to see why this should be otherwise in the case
before the Court, where the partner is a transsexual.  Accordingly, I
have come to the conclusion that there has been a violation of
Article 8 (art. 8).

        As already stated, X was not in the same position as other
partners who had the right to be registered as fathers.  This is in my
opinion discrimination on the ground of sex.  Accordingly, I find that
there was a violation of Article 14 taken in conjunction with Article 8
(art. 14+8).

                  DISSENTING OPINION OF JUDGE FOIGHEL

1.      Article 8 (art. 8) expressly states that "Everyone has the
right to respect for his private and family life ..." (emphasis added).
In my view this includes transsexuals.

2.      As in the Cossey case, I find that a government's failure to
ensure that full legal recognition is given to a transsexual's change
of sex following successful gender reassignment surgery amounts to a
violation of Article 8 of the Convention (art. 8).

3.      In our joint dissenting opinion in the Cossey case,
Judges Palm, Pekkanen and I referred to the view expressed in earlier
judgments that "the law appears to be in a transitional state" and that
"[t]he need for appropriate legal measures should be kept under review
having regard particularly to scientific and societal developments".

        This important and relevant statement underlines the fact that,
with regard to the status of transsexuals, legal solutions must
necessarily follow medical, social and moral developments.

4.      While the present complaint differs in some aspects from the
earlier cases involving transsexuals, it is a fact that X, like Cossey,
Rees and many other individuals, is convinced that he does not truly
belong to the sex the biological characteristics of which he had at
birth.  The central issue here is that the law should fully take
account of his gender reassignment.  This is not primarily a case
concerning the welfare of a child; instead, it is about the respect to
be afforded to a transsexual taking part in family life.

        I cannot therefore accept the majority's argument in
paragraphs 47 and 51 that the recognition of X as father could be
harmful to the child, especially since it is stated in paragraph 47
that it is "not clear" whether this recognition would be to the
advantage of the child or would instead be harmful to her.

5.      Paragraph 38 lists the most recent developments in the field
of recognition of transsexuality.  These changes underline the point
made seven years ago in the above-mentioned joint dissenting opinion,
that "[t]here is a growing awareness of the importance of each person's
own identity and of the need to tolerate and accept the differences
between individual human beings.  Furthermore, the right to privacy and
the right to live, as far as possible, one's own life undisturbed are
increasingly accepted."  These developments are not reflected in the
view of the majority.

6.      It is part of our common European heritage that governments are
under a duty to take special care of individuals who are disadvantaged
in any way.  That the United Kingdom Government to a certain extent
share this view is demonstrated by the fact that the State made it
possible for X to undergo the surgery which brought his physiology into
conformity with his psychology.  Similarly, the authorities agreed to
allow X and Y to have a child through AID.  Furthermore, the couple
could probably obtain a joint residence order in respect of the child
which would further normalise their family life.

        I am of course aware that in some countries and some circles
there exist negative attitudes towards transsexuals, based on deeply
rooted moral and ethical notions.  However, such attitudes seem slowly
to be changing in European societies.  As I have mentioned, the
Government did not demonstrate such attitudes at the time of X's
operation or when X and Y were granted permission to undergo
AID treatment.

7.      It is the Court's task to balance the rights of the individual
against the interests of society as a whole.  However, the Government
have not adduced any convincing arguments with regard to these
competing interests.  Moreover, they have made no attempt to justify
their failure to help X further by ensuring that his change of sex
receives legal recognition, recognition which would benefit him and
harm no one.

8.      I find Article 8 (art. 8) violated in this case.

9.      The Human Fertility and Embryology Act 1990 provides that where
an unmarried woman gives birth as a result of AID with the involvement
of her male partner, the latter, rather than the donor of the sperm,
shall be treated for legal purposes as the father of the child
(section 28 (3) - see paragraph 21 of the judgment).  According to the
Births and Deaths Registration Act 1953, the child's father (or the
person regarded by law as the father) can have his name entered in the
register if he and the mother jointly request that this be done
(section 10 of the 1953 Act, as amended by the
Family Law Reform Act 1987 - see paragraph 23 of the judgment).  Had
the present applicant been a biological man from birth, albeit not the
biological father of the child, this rule would certainly have been
applied.  X, however, because he was a transsexual, was denied this
right.

10.     Article 14 (art. 14) says "... without discrimination on any
ground such as sex, race, colour ... birth or other status".  These
characteristics are all "nature-given".  A transsexual is someone who
has been born different from others, someone who has been born with a
"defect".  The English law puts transsexuals in a special category and
discriminates against them.

        This, I find, is a clear violation of Article 14 taken in
conjunction with Article 8 (art. 14+8).

                  DISSENTING OPINION OF JUDGE GOTCHEV

        To my regret, I cannot agree with the majority in the
present case, for the following reasons.

        I agree that, according to the constant case-law of the Court,
the relationships between X, Y and Z can be regarded as "family life"
(see paragraph 37 of the judgment).  Since it was established that de
facto family ties of the kind protected by Article 8 of the Convention
(art. 8) existed between the applicants, I consider that the State was
under a duty to act in a manner calculated to enable those ties to be
developed and to establish legal safeguards to render possible, from
the moment of birth or as soon as practicable thereafter, the child's
integration into the family (see the case-law cited at paragraph 43 of
the judgment).  In my view, this obligation entails the possibility for
X to be recognised in law as Z's father.

        It is true that there is no common standard among the
Contracting States with regard to the parental rights of transsexuals
and I agree with the conclusion that States must therefore be allowed
a wide margin of appreciation in this area (see paragraph 44 of the
judgment).  It is nonetheless necessary for the Court to establish
whether the present situation under English law, whereby the
transsexual "father" of a child conceived by AID was denied the
possibility to be recognised as such in law, struck a fair balance
between the individual's right to respect for family life and any
countervailing general interest.  In striking this balance, the welfare
of the child should be the prevailing consideration, irrespective of
the manner of his or her conception or the transsexuality of the
"social father".

        For these reasons, I find violations of Articles 8 and 14 of
the Convention (art. 8, art. 14).