LGBT Rights:

LGBT Rights in Indiana

Indiana LGBT rights have a long history with many setbacks on the road to equality. Although Indiana still has a long way to go to reach total equality we are likely to see some big changes still in the state.

A hot issue that we may see passed soon in Indiana is a conversion therapy ban. At the moment there are no cities or counties that have passed any bills on the issue but many groups hope to pass a statewide bill.

Indiana lgbt rights

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Chapter 1:

What are LGBT Rights in Indiana?

LGBT rights in Indiana have gone from bans on sexual activity as recently as the 1960’s to seeing a 70% approval rating of LGBT marriage. Although the state has seen a lot of change in attitudes since the 60’s we still have a ways to go

Indiana votes

Our Evolving Rights in Indiana

Indiana LGBT rights have seen a lot of progress for trans rights. However, discrimination is still a hot button issue and one that needs further bills in the state. The state is one of just a few that allow trans individuals to change their name and gender on their birth certificate without getting a full transition surgery. It is also one of the few states that allow you to be non-binary.

With so many states at our borders restricting trans rights there is a lot of support in Indiana. In 2017, a bill was attempted to reverse the birth certificate decision. Within one day of public backlash the bill failed. So what kind of laws do we have in place now that help the LGBT community as whole?

Indiana LGBT Stats


Total LGBTQ Adult Population.


% of Adults (18+) Who are LGBTQ


Are raising children.


Who Have Income <$24K

Chapter 2:


Since the Obergefell v. Hodges case in 2016, Indiana has seen a huge increase in public opinion on same-sex marriage and gay rights as a whole. The ability to marry in the state has also opened up some other benefits. For instance, adoption is now legal and available to both individuals.

Indiana lgbt marriage

The Fight Toward Equal Marriage

Marriage equality hasn’t come without a fight. At least three times before the 2014 decision of the Supreme Court, Indiana attempted to make marriage between only a man and woman. However, none of those bills passed into law.


  • All states recognize marriages performed in other states
  • Same-sex couples can file joint state tax returns
  • Employers must now offer same-sex couple spousal benefits
  • Couples have the same visitation and decision making rights as other couples
  • Now same-sex couples have the same rights upon the death of a partner
  • A right to divorce

Chapter 3:

Same-Sex Adoption

Same-sex adoption has been and in some ways is still a huge issue in the community. For most of Indiana’s history a child could only be adopted by a single individual or by a married couple. This of course  excluded gay and lesbian couples from having a full legal right to their children.

Today many religious organizations may still make the process difficult but with legal protections it is finally possible.

indiana lgbt adoption

How Same-Sex Adoption Came to Indiana

Indiana has been ahead of the times on same-sex adoption and had the right for both partners to sign a birth certificate since 2006. The state has been so far ahead because of a landmark decision in 2005 that gave a lesbian couple rights to their child conceived through artificial insemination.  

Rights We Still Don’t Have:

  • Parental Leave Laws for Same-Sex Couples
  • Non-Discrimination Laws for Same-Sex Couples Looking to Adopt
  • Non-Discrimination Laws for Foster Care

Chapter 4:

Conversion Therapy

No matter how many studies that come out disproving the effectiveness of conversion therapy it continues to happen. This is one bill that Indiana LGBT groups hope to pass at a state level. However, there are many ways where a bill may go wrong. For instance, Utah just passed a ban on the practice but it is only illegal for no religious leaders to perform.

indiana conversion therapy

Conversion Therapy in Indiana

At this moment in time there are no cities or counties that have banned conversion therapy. However, there is still hope for the future of these bills coming to pass across the state. 

Percent of State with Conversion Therapy Ban

Chapter 5:

Transgender Rights & Hospitals

Trans rights have been easier to gain in Indiana than in many states at the border. Although these rights have only been in place since 2017 and are still fairly difficult to access. However, the fact that they have been consistently passed and have held on is a good sign for the future.

Hospitals, on the other hand, have not been keeping up with these laws and need to work toward making the trans community feel more comfortable in a hospital situation. At this time 1 in 5 LGBT adults have avoided hospitals because of a negative experience.

indiana trans rights

Transgender Rights in Indiana

Indiana has passed a lot of progressive bills since 2017. First the right to change your name and gender on your drivers license. Then a bill was passed allowing trans men and women to change their gender on their birth certificate. Finally we got a non-binary option for drivers licenses. 

Name Change Guide

How to Change Your Name in Indiana

Driver's License

Physician’s Statement of Gender Change – State Form 55617

Birth Certificate

How to Amend a Birth Certificate in Indiana

Indiana Trans Surgeons

List of surgeons that perform transitioning services

LGBT Hospital Rights in Indiana

A negative experience in a hospital can change the way you access health care. For example, 1 in 5 LGBT individuals have said that they no longer go to the doctor after a bad experience. That is a lot of people and we will need to make a lot of progress in the future to help prevent this type of situation in the future.

Chapter 6:

Employment Laws

On June 15, 2020 a landmark decision was made by the U.S. Supreme Court. Finally employment rights would extend to LGBT individuals federally. This means that your employer can not fire you for being gay, lesbian, or transgendered. However, in At-Will states you may still be in danger of being fired but given another reason to avoid a lawsuit.

Indiana Employment rights

Employment Protections in Indiana

The Supreme Court found on June 15, 2020 that employers can not fire an LGBT employee for simply being gay, lesbian, or transexual. This decision made workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity illegal in all 50 states.

Percent of Cities with LGBT Employment protection in Indiana

If you have been fired because of your sexual orientation or gender identity you have rights. The lawyers at Dyer, Garofalo, Mann, and Shultz can help you fight back.

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