Adoptee-rights bill to become law

state capitol street

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Adoptees will be able to apply for a copy of their original birth certificates under legislation on its way to Gov. Tom Wolf’s desk.

House Bill 162 passed the Senate this week with a unanimous vote of 47-0.

Adult adoptees currently may petition the courts for a copy of their original birth records, but the request may be denied by a judge.

Rep. Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre/Mifflin) said his legislation allows birth parents to redact their names following the law’s effective date. Birth parents who choose not to redact their names can submit a contact preference form to indicate whether or not they wish to be contacted.

Birth parents who choose to either redact their names or submit a contact preference form – even those who choose “no contact” – would still have to provide medical history information to be kept on file for the adoptee.

Adoptees will be eligible to apply for a copy of their original birth certificates one year after the bill is signed into law.

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