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Missouri:  Access to OBCs and Non-ID

MISSOURI

DENIES UNRESTRICTED ACCESS TO OBC (Access subject to restrictions and redaction, though most who request
it are able to receive it.)

HB1713 Modifies Missouri Adoptee Rights Act (2018)

Special thanks to the Adoption Triad of St. Louis

Who May Access Information
Citation: Ann. Stat. § 453.121

Nonidentifying information is available to:
• The adoptive parents
• The child’s legal guardians
• The adult adopted person
• The adult adopted person’s lineal descendants if the adopted person is deceased
Identifying information is available to the adult adopted person or the adult adopted person’s lineal descendants if the adopted
person is deceased.

 

Access to Original Birth Certificate
The new law, effective January 1, 2018, grants adoptees access to their OBCs subject to restrictions, including birth parent vetoes and redaction.  Under the new law, adoptees (18 years of age or older) may request their OBC, however, a birth parent may prohibit the adoptees's access to their OBC by filing a “contact preference form" that says “I prefer not to be contacted,”  but beginning January 1, 2018, the burden is on the birth parent to act — failure to fill out the form is considered permission.  [Note:  The "contact preference form" also allows the birth parent to give permission along with updated contact information including any married names.  Unfortunately, the state does not distinguish between the redaction forms and the forms granting permission.] Depending on whether one or two parents are listed on the original birth certificate, the OBC is either withheld from the adoptee or released to the adoptee with identifying information redacted.  Additionally, state regulations specify that the OBC is also redacted if a parent requests contact via an intermediary.  

HB1713 Modifies Missouri Adoptee Rights Act (2018)

Access to Non-identifying Information
Citation: Ann. Stat. § 453.121

Non-identifying information, if known, concerning undisclosed birth parents or siblings shall be provided upon written request.
Non-identifying information can include the physical description, nationality, religious background, and medical history of the birth
parents or siblings.

 

Mutual Access to Identifying Information
Citation: Ann. Stat. § 453.121

An adult adopted person, or his or her lineal descendants if he or she is deceased, may make a written request to the court for
information identifying his or her birth parents. If the birth parents have consented to the release of identifying information, the court
shall disclose that information. If the birth parents have not consented to the release of the information, the court shall, within 10 days
of receipt of the request, notify in writing the child-placing agency or juvenile court having access to the requested information.
If the agency or court is unable to notify the birth parent within 3 months, the identifying information shall not be disclosed to the
adult adopted person. If an affidavit executed by a birth parent authorizing the release of information is filed with the court, the court
shall disclose the identifying information.
Any adult adopted person whose adoption was finalized in this State, or whose birth parents had their parental rights terminated in
this State, may request the court to secure and disclose identifying information concerning an adult sibling. Identifying information
pertaining exclusively to the adult sibling, whether part of the permanent record of a file in the court or in an agency, shall be
released only upon consent of that adult sibling.
The department shall maintain a registry for birth parents, adult siblings, and adult adopted persons to indicate their desire to
be contacted by each other. At the time of registration, a birth parent or adult sibling may consent in writing to the release of
identifying information to an adult adopted person. If such consent has not been executed and the division believes that a match
has occurred, the division shall make confidential contact with the birth parents or adult siblings and with the adult adopted person.
The birth parent, adult sibling, or adult adopted person may refuse to go forward with any further contact between the parties when
contacted by the division.

Where the Information Can Be Located
Missouri Division of Family Services, Adoption Information Registry

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