Adoptees will soon to be able to request original birth certificates

2 years 10 months 23 hours ago Thursday, October 12 2017 Oct 12, 2017 Thursday, October 12, 2017 11:09:00 AM CDT October 12, 2017 in News
By: Maia McDonald, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Adoptees born after 1941 will soon be able to request their original birth certificates, per the Missouri Adoptee Rights Act. Applications were initially going to start being accepted after January 1, 2018. The certificates won't be available until January 2, 2018, but in an effort to expedite the process the Bureau of Vital Records is now accepting early applications for adoptees to request their original birth records.

"It can take several weeks to process these requests," said Sara O'Connor, a public relations representative for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. "The department is anticipating several hundred applicants within the first few days of the law taking effect. Applications early will allow DHSS to better serve customers."

Dewey Crepeau, the executive director of A Gift of Hope Adoptions, who used to work as an adoption lawyer, said these developments are highly important for Missouri adoptees. 

"It fundamentally changes the rights or the statutory procedures for an adult adoptee to get a copy of their original birth certificate. Before that it was practically impossible to get a copy of a Missouri adoptee's original birth certificate. Now the default has kind of shifted."

Crepeau said that through his long experience working with adoptees, he believes having this option will mean a lot. 

"A lot of adoptees, at some point in their life will ask 'what is my story?' and a big part of their story would be to see their original birth certificate," Crepeau said. 

The Missouri Adoptee Rights Act, signed into law in 2016 by former Gov. Jay Nixon, allows an adult adoptee or adoptee's attorney to request an uncertified copy of an adoptee's birth certificate. Non-certified copies of the birth certificates will only be able to be used for genealogical purposes, and not for identification. 

Crepeau said prior to the law being passed, there were a number of legal barriers for adoptees to receive similar information. 

"You had to go to court, you needed birth parents' consent. Now the stature just says you can get a copy of your original birth certificate, unless both birth parents object."

Although adoptees may start applying in order to get this information, birth parents do have a right to determine whether or not they'd like their information to be released. O'Connor also said birth parents can also determine a contact preference and medical history report for adoptees looking for information.

According to Crepeau, even if only one birth parent signs off on the request, an adult adoptee could still get some partial information. He said many adoptees believe 

"A lot of people who are adopted say 'it is should be our right to see our original birth certificate,'" Crepeau said.

Crepeau says it's difficult to say whether the lowered barriers to adoptee information would help adoption agencies like A Gift of Hope.

"We still may have birth parents, even though contact between a biological parent and an adopted child is much more open than it was even ten, fifteen years ago, we may still have a situation where birth parents say 'I don't ever want to contacted.' Now they may change their minds down the road," Crepeau said. "But at the time they're making that decision to place a child for adoption, that might be their thought."

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services said although any interested adoptees can begin sending in their applications, it will take at least six weeks or longer to locate the documents. 

More News

Grid
List
WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Joe Biden has chosen California Sen. Kamala Harris as his running mate. It’s a move... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 3:23:39 PM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – A news conference staged Tuesday put mourners and activists in front of cameras to call on Governor... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 3:02:00 PM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — The Jefferson City School Board has agreed to sell the former Simonsen Ninth Grade Center building to... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 2:17:00 PM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about impacts in the community. You can... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 2:09:00 PM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Supreme Court upheld a lower court's ruling awarding damages to a woman injured when her... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 1:37:53 PM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
The COVID-19 pandemic has made access to mental health resources difficult, and for children with impulse control disorders, the changes... More >>
1 day ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 9:50:00 AM CDT August 11, 2020 in A Brighter Tomorrow
COLUMBIA — A home invasion in north Columbia sent one woman to the hospital early Tuesday morning. CPD Detective... More >>
2 days ago Tuesday, August 11 2020 Aug 11, 2020 Tuesday, August 11, 2020 6:21:00 AM CDT August 11, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — Columbia's Board of Education voted Monday night to delay the start of the 2020-2021 school year. ... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 9:36:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
President Donald Trump was abruptly escorted out of a White House press conference on Monday after shots were fired outside... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 6:06:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
Columbia - Watch live as the Board of Education considers three different proposals from the school district for the start... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 5:24:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - The National Weather Service issued a flash flooding warning for Boone County as heavy rains continue until 9:45... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 5:11:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - One person is suffering life-threatening injuries after a crash on I-70 on Monday. The crash occurred around... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 4:45:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Gov. Mike Parson expanded his special session to include a new provision regarding the backlog of murder... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 4:32:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA —It's not a surprise that back to school preparations might look different this year. For some teachers, this... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 4:28:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA – Commissioners of the power 5 conferences, (The ACC, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC) met Sunday to discuss potential... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 3:17:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Police arrested two people in suspected connection with a Sunday night burglary. Columbia police responded to a... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 3:07:17 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Boone County's public health staff have a plan for contact tracing in the upcoming school year According... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 2:43:00 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri's Department of Health and Senior Services issued licenses to four new medical marijuana facilities. The... More >>
2 days ago Monday, August 10 2020 Aug 10, 2020 Monday, August 10, 2020 2:41:31 PM CDT August 10, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 71°
7am 71°
8am 74°
9am 77°
10am 80°