|S.F. No. 3193 - Adoption Birth Records (first engrossment)|
|Author:||Senator Ann Rest|
|Prepared by:||Kathleen Pontius, Senate Counsel (651/296-4394)|
|Date:||April 16, 2008|
This bill would change the law to eliminate the distinction between pre- and post-1977 adoptions. In all cases, an adopted person would have access to birth record information unless there was an affidavit of nondisclosure on file with the state registrar.
Sections 1 to 4 correct cross-references in current law consistent with the recodification of the statute in section 5. In addition, section 2 makes changes in the classification of the birth record data, consistent with the new provisions in section 5.
Section 5 contains the new law governing access to original birth records by adopted persons.
Subdivision 1 requires the Department of Health to prepare affidavit of disclosure and nondisclosure forms under which a birth parent may agree to or object to the release of the original birth record to the adopted person. The Department must make the forms readily accessible to birth parents on its Web site.
Subdivision 2 provides that, upon request, the state registrar must provide a noncertified copy of the original birth record to an adopted person age 19 or older, unless there is an affidavit of nondisclosure on file. The registrar must comply with the terms of affidavits.
Subdivision 3 authorizes rescission of affidavits.
Subdivision 4 provides for access to birth record information in cases where there is an affidavit of nondisclosure on file. The adopted person may petition the court for disclosure of the birth record information. The court must grant the petition if it determines that the benefits of disclosure are greater than the benefits of nondisclosure. In addition, an adopted person age 19 or older may request the state registrar to search death records to determine whether the birth parent is deceased. If so, a noncertified copy of the original birth record must be released to the adopted person.
Subdivision 5 requires the Department, in consultation with adoption agencies and advocates, to provide information and educational materials to adopted persons and birth parents regarding the changes in the law under this act that affect accessibility to birth records. A notice must also be included on the Department Web site. Adoption agencies may charge a fee for counseling and support services provided to adopted persons and birth parents.
Section 6 requires the Department to charge a fee of $18 for noncertified copies of birth records provided to adopted persons age 19 or older to cover the cost of providing the birth record and costs associated with distribution of the information required under section 5, subdivision 5.
Section 7 strikes a requirement that the Commissioner of Health notify the Commissioner of Human Services of a request by an adopted person for access to birth record information.
Section 8 changes a cross-reference.
Section 9 repeals current statutes that are replaced or superseded by new language in the bill.
Section 10 contains a July 1, 2009, effective date.
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