Access to Adoption Records - Indiana

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Who May Access Information

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 31-19-17-2; 31-19-25-2

A person, a licensed child-placing agency, or a local office placing a child for adoption shall prepare or cause to be prepared a report summarizing the available medical, psychological, and educational records of the person or agency concerning the birth parents, excluding any information that would identify the birth parents. This report shall be given to the following persons:

  • The prospective adoptive parents, as follows:
    • At the time the home study or evaluation concerning the suitability of the proposed home for the child is commenced
    • As soon as practical after the prospective adoptive parents are matched with the birth mother
    • With the consent of the prospective adoptive parents, no more than 30 days after the child is placed with the prospective adoptive parents
  • Upon request and without information that would identify the birth parents, unless an adoptee already knows the identity of the birth parents, an adoptee who is at least age 21 and provides proof of identification

The following persons may request the release of identifying information:

  • An adult adoptee
  • A birth parent
  • An adoptive parent
  • The spouse or relative of a deceased adoptee
  • The spouse or relative of a deceased birth parent

Access to Nonidentifying Information

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 31-19-17-3; 31-19-17-5

The person, licensed child-placing agency, or county office shall release all available social, medical, psychological, and educational records concerning the child to the following:

  • The prospective adoptive parent or adoptive parent
  • Upon request, the adoptee who is at least age 21 and provides proof of identification

The report shall exclude information that would identify the birth parents, unless the adoptive parent, prospective adoptive parent, or adoptee who requests the information knows the identity of the birth parents.

For an adoption that was granted before July 1, 1993: Upon the request of an adoptee who is at least age 21, the licensed child-placing agency or a county office shall provide to the adoptee available information from social, medical, psychological, and educational records and reports. Information that would identify the birth parents shall be excluded from the report, unless an adoptee already knows the identity of the birth parents.

Mutual Access to Identifying Information

Citation: Ann. Stat. §§ 31-19-21-1; 31-19-25-3; 31-19-25-4.6

An adoptee who is at least age 21 or an adoptive parent of an adoptee who is less than age 21 may consent to the release of identifying information concerning the adoptee in a signed writing. The consent must identify the persons to whom the information may be released.

A birth parent may restrict access to identifying information concerning the birth parent by filing a contact preference form with the State registrar that indicates the birth parent's lack of consent to the release of identifying information.

The State registrar shall prescribe a contact preference form for birth parents. The form must include the following:

  • A component in which a birth parent shall indicate one of the following with regard to a person that requests identifying information:
    • That the birth parent welcomes the person to contact the birth parent directly and authorizes the release of identifying information
    • That the birth parent prefers to be contacted through an intermediary and does not authorize the release of identifying information directly to the person
    • That the birth parent prefers that the person not contact the birth parent directly or through an intermediary and does not authorize the release of identifying information
    • That the birth parent does not want contact but does allow the State registrar to contact him or her to request updated medical information
  • A component in which a birth parent who prefers to be contacted through an intermediary may designate a third party to act as the intermediary
  • Provisions necessary for the State registrar to be able to identify the adoption file of the adoptee to whom the form applies
  • A notice that the birth parent may change his or her indicated preference regarding contact by filing a new contact preference form

A contact preference form submitted by a birth parent to the State registrar does not lapse unless the birth parent is deceased, except when the contact preference form specifically states that the contact preference form remains in effect after the birth parent's death.

Access to Original Birth Certificate

Citation: Ann. Stat. § 31-19-13-2

The original birth certificate is withheld from inspection except for a child adopted by a stepparent or as provided in statutes pertaining to release of identifying information.

Where the Information Can Be Located

Indiana Adoption Matching Registry, Indiana State Department of Health, Vital Statistics