by Sam Clanton
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri residents who were adopted no longer need a court order to request their original birth certificates.
State Representative Don Phillips of Kimberling City, who sponsored the Missouri Adoptee Rights Act, received his own birth certificate for the first time at a “Breaking the Seal” event Tuesday in Jefferson City.
Phillips recognized the Department of Health and Senior Services for the hard work that has gone into fulfilling the birth certificate requests by presenting them with a resolution from the Missouri House of Representatives.
According to a news release, each request for an original birth certificate takes several weeks to process, and the department has received an average of 50 to 100 requests per week since the process opened in October.
To make a request, an adoptee or their attorney must submit an application by mail or in person, and pay a 15-dollar fee.
Additional information from the press release:
Non-certified copies of the original birth certificates issued by DHSS cannot be used for establishing identity, and will be stamped “For genealogical purposes only—not to be used for establishing identity.” In addition, no records will be released without first checking for receipt of a parental preference form.
Another provision of the Missouri Adoptee Rights Act, the parental preference form allows birth parents to designate whether they want their information released. Birth parents may also establish a contact preference and complete a medical history form.
The Application for Non-Certified Copy of an Original Birth Certificate, Birth Parent Contact Preference and Medical History forms can be obtained at the BVR office in Jefferson City, requested via phone or found on the DHSS website at http://health.mo.gov/data/vitalrecords/adopteerightsact.php.
Photo: DHSS Division of Community and Public Health Acting Director Kerri Tesreau with Missouri State Representative Don Phillips.