Adoptees to get original birth certificates
In just a few weeks, on 1 July 2021, adult adoptees born in Connecticut will have the unrestricted right to get what everyone else takes for granted.
A new law, signed into law on 7 June by Governor Ned Lamont, will give all adoptees the right to get a copy of their original birth certificates (OBCs) once they reach age 18.1
As Connecticut law stands right now, only those persons whose adoptions were finalized on or after 1 October 1983 could get a copy of their OBCs without limitation. Any other adoptee had to get a court order, conditioned on either the death of the birth parent or the birth parent’s consent.2
The change, which takes effect 1 July, removes the date restriction and allows any adult born in Connecticut to receive that document — and any adult child or grandchild of the adoptee can get it too.3
With the Governor’s signature, Connecticut thus becomes the 10th state to adopt unrestricted access to OBCs by adult adoptees, joining Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Kansas, Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Oregon and Rhode Island.4 Other states which permit some access to OBCs and/or adoption information without a court order — but with limits — include Arkansas, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin.5
The Connecticut law provides that the registrar of vital statistics for each town in the state must release an uncertified copy of the OBC within 30 days of receiving a written request from any adult adoptee or from the adult child or grandchild of any adoptee. The certificate will reflect that a replacement certificate was also issued, and any information provided by the birth parent as to preferences for contact or medical health history will be noted as well.8 By its terms, it applies to all requests filed on and after July 1, 2021.
Congratulations to the more than 38,000 Nutmeggers who now have the unrestricted right to know who they are.
Cite/link to this post: Judy G. Russell, “Connecticut opens OBCs,” The Legal Genealogist (https://www.legalgenealogist.com/blog : posted 9 June 2021).
- See Connecticut Public Act No. 21-21, “An Act Concerning Access to Original Birth Certificates by Adult Adopted Persons,” Connecticut General Assembly (https://www.cga.ct.gov/ : accessed 9 June 2021). ↩
- See ibid., Conn. Gen. Stat. Sec. 7-53. ↩
- See §1(c), Connecticut Public Act No. 21-21, “An Act Concerning Access to Original Birth Certificates by Adult Adopted Persons.” ↩
- See Gregory Luce, “The United States of OBC,” Adoptee Rights Law (https://adopteerightslaw.com/ : accessed 9 June 2021). ↩
- See ibid. ↩
- Christopher Keating, “Adult adoptees in Connecticut would have an easier time finding their birth parents under measure OK’d by lawmakers,” Hartford Courant, posted 4 May 2021 (https://www.courant.com/ : accessed 9 June 2021). ↩
- Christopher Keating, “Connecticut Senate makes it easier for 38,000 adult adoptees to obtain original birth certificates,” Hartford Courant, posted 25 May 2021. ↩
- §1(c), Connecticut Public Act No. 21-21, “An Act Concerning Access to Original Birth Certificates by Adult Adopted Persons.” ↩