French couple reported to courts for calling their daughter Liam

The prosecutor in the case says he's worried the name "would be likely to create a risk of gender confusion"

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There have been a few wrangles over baby names in France over recent years: that’s because, unlike here in the UK, the courts there are allowed to refuse permission for parents to give their newborn a particular name if they think it’s not in the child’s best interests.

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In fact, up until 1993, French parents had to choose a name from a set list ?

Since the list was abandoned, baby-name rows have blown up over monikers like Nutella and Strawberry but the latest one is a little different.

That’s because the name in question – Liam – is a pretty standard one (think Gallagher, Neeson, Payne or Hemsworth) but it’s being given to a girl, when traditionally it’s been considered a boy’s name.

The prosecutor has said the name “would be likely to create a risk of gender confusion” and would be “therefore contrary to the interest of the child and could harm her in her social relations” and has asked a judge to request that the parents give the baby another name or, failing that, the judge choose an alternative name.

A date for the court hearing is yet to be set.

What do you think?

France isn’t the only country where the state can have a say in what you call your child: both New Zealand and Iceland have lists of banned names, and Sweden and Denmark have approved lists.

But what do you think about this particular case? Is France behind the times with thinking about ‘boys’ vs ‘girls’ names? Isn’t this an issue that’s going to keep coming up? Or maybe you think the prosecutor has a point?

Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook

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