SCS/HCS/HB 1599 - Under current law, an original birth certificate for an adoptee may be opened by the state registrar upon receipt of a certified copy of a court of adoption order. This act adds another method to obtain a copy of the original birth certificate by the adoptee or the adoptee's attorney. In order to receive a copy of the original birth certificate, the adoptee must be at least 18, have been born in Missouri, and file a written application with proof of identity with the state registrar. The state registrar may require a fee and a waiting period identical to non-adopted persons who seek a copy of an original birth certificate. When the state registrar issues an uncertified copy of a birth certificate, such certificate shall contain a statement indicating that it is to be used for genealogical purposes only and not to establish identity.
Before the completion of an adoption, a court shall make available to birth parents a contact preference form developed by the state registrar and provided by the Department of Health and Senior Services. If a birth parent chooses to fill out the form, the court clerk shall send the form with the certificate of decree of adoption to the state registrar to accompany the original birth certificate of the adoptee. Birth parents may update the form at any time upon request.
A birth parent may, at any time, indicate on the contact form filed with the state registrar as to whether they would prefer to be contacted by the adoptee or an intermediary. If both birth parents indicate that they would prefer not to be contacted, a copy of the original birth certificate shall not be released. If only one birth parent indicates a preference not to be contacted, his or her identifying information shall be redacted from the copy of the original birth certificate to be released.
A birth parent may indicate on a medical history form filed with the state registrar as to whether or not they have or prefer to provide any medical information. Contact preference forms and medical history forms shall be placed in a sealed envelope upon receipt and considered a confidential communication from the birth parent to the adoptee. If a birth parent indicates that he or she prefers not to be contacted, the adoptee may access a copy of the medical history form with identifying information redacted.
Original birth certificates issued under this act shall be issued beginning January 1, 2018. Adoptees born prior to 1941 shall have access to their original birth certificates beginning August 28, 2016.