If you are an adopted person over the age of 21 who was born in Illinois on or after January 1, 1946, you may request a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate through the Illinois Department of Public Health starting November 15, 2011.
To obtain a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate, you must:
1. Complete a Request for a Non-Certified Copy of an Original Birth Certificate (click here to download this form).
2. On or after November 15, 2011, mail the completed Request form, along with a photocopy of your driver's license or other government-issued photo ID and a $15 check or money order made out to the "Illinois Department of Public Health" to:
Illinois Department of Public Health
Division of Vital Records
Attn: Illinois Adoption Registry
925 E. Ridgeley Ave.
Springfield, IL 62702-2737
Please note that you are NOT required to sign up with the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange (the “Registry”) to obtain a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate.
However, if one of your birth relatives has already signed up with the Registry and shared updated identifying information, correspondence, photographs, and/or medical background information, the Registry will let you know and send you the forms you'll need to sign up. If you then sign up with the Registry, any information, photographs or written statements that have been left at the Registry will be sent to you at the address on file for you with the Registry.
The new law allows birth parents of adopted persons born or or after January 1, 1946, to request that their names be deleted from non-certified copies of an original birth certificate issued during their lifetime. To request anonymity, birth parents must complete a Birth Parent Preference Form.
If one of your birth parents requests that their identifying information be deleted from the non-certified copy of your original birth certificate, you may:
1. Request a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate that does not include identifying information for the birth parent who requested anonymity.
2. Wait until a copy of the death certificate of the birth parent who requested anonymity has been filed with the Registry. Once a copy of the birth parent's death certificate has been filed with the Registry, you will be able obtain a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate which includes that birth parent’s identifying information.
3. Request that a state-appointed intermediary from Confidential Intermediary Services of Illinois initiate a search for the birth parent once five or more years have gone by since they filed the request for anonymity. The Intermediary will request updated medical information and also confirm whether or not the birth parent would be willing to release identifying information to you. There is no cost to you for this search. If the Intermediary learns during the course of the search that the birth parent has died since filing their request for anonymity, they will attempt to obtain a copy of the birth parent's death certificate and submit it to the Registry. Once the Registry has received the birth parent's death certificate, they will be authorized to release a non-certified copy of your original birth certificate that includes all identifying information for this deceased birth parent.
All birth parents can express their wishes regarding contact by completing a Birth Parent Preference Form. Your birth parents may indicate a desire not to be contacted or express an interest in direct or indirect contact on the Birth Parent Preference Form. They may also provide you with non-medical background information.
There is a $15 registration fee associated with the Registry, but registrants who voluntarily complete a two-page medical questionnaire on genetically-transmitted diseases do not have to pay the $15.00 fee.
For additional information about the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange and/or to download the necessary application forms, please click here.
For a listing of the organizations that participated on the Original Birth Certificate Access Oversight Committee, many of which may be able to provide you with additional information on the new law, and/or post-adoption support, search or counseling services, please click here.
The complete text of the new law, Public Act 096-0895, can be found here.
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