The 15-year-old, the daughter of Dwyane Wade and his ex-wife Siohvaughn Funches-Wade, received a legal name change and gender change from a Los Angeles court, according to court papers acquired by E! News.
Dwyane filed a motion with the court in August 2022 on Zaya’s behalf to formally alter the teen’s name and gender after she came out as transgender in 2020. Her mother submitted her paperwork asking the judge to reject the motion the following November.
In the documents obtained by E! News, Siohvaughn—who also shares son Zaire Wade, 21, with Dwyane—said, “I have concerns that [Dwyane] may be pressuring our child to move forward with the name and gender change to capitalize on the financial opportunities that he has received from companies, and will receive based upon [Dwyane’s] statements to me, based on our child’s name and gender change.”
In the paperwork, Siohvaughn requested that Zaya decide to formally change her name and gender “at the age of adulthood.”
Dwyane stated in a different court document that “granting the Petition is in Zaya’s best interest,” adding, “While it certainly would have been preferable for Zaya’s mother to be supportive of this important part of Zaya’s journey, Zaya should not be forced to put her life on hold while she waits for Siohvaughn to acknowledge and accept her truth.” Dwyane also has two other children, Xavier, 9, and Kaavia
The former NBA player added that even though he has full possession of the adolescent and thus the power to decide all matters about her, he first sought his ex’s opinion on the name and gender change before submitting the appeal.
Dwyane previously posted on Instagram, “This isn’t a game for my family and most certainly not for Zaya. The speaker continued, “No one in our home would ever force Zaya or any of our children to do anything against their will, much less compel them to take on an identity. She lives like this!”
Siohvaughn’s staff was contacted by E! News for feedback, but no response was received. On Instagram, Dwyane has previously written, “This isn’t a game for my family and most certainly not for Zaya; I continued, “No one in our home would ever force Zaya or any of our kids to do anything against their will, much less cause them to take on an identity. Her existence is like this.”