DCF: Adult Adoption Search

Frequently Asked Questions about Adult Adoption Search

Connecticut Search Law
Connecticut Search Law provides birth parents, birth relatives, adult adoptees, adults formerly in foster care, and adoptive parents with access to certain information contained in adoption files. The laws surrounding adoption files are very specific and the information below is a summary of the law:

According to Connecticut Search Law (Connecticut General Statutes, §§ 45a-743 through 45a-757) adult adoptees, adults formerly in foster care for whom the state of Connecticut had been appointed the statutory parent, and adoptive parents have access to certain information contained in adoption files, which is most often referred to as non-identifying and medical information.

Birth parents have the ability to update information regarding their medical history that is contained in their child’s adoption file.

Additionally, adult adoptees, adults formerly in foster care, birth parents and birth relatives have the ability to conduct a search for their birth family members who are 18 and older through the agency that completed their adoption or the termination of their parental rights.


Frequently Asked Questions About Connecticut Adoption Search

Who can receive non-identifying and medical information?

If the adoption occurred in Connecticut or if the parental rights were terminated in Connecticut:

  • Adult Adoptees (18 yrs and older)
  • An Adult for Whom the State of Connecticut was the Statutory Parent
  • Adoptive Parent of a Minor Child (Under 18)


Who can conduct a search for family members?

If the adoption occurred in Connecticut or if the parental rights were terminated in Connecticut:

  • Adult Adoptees (18 years old and older)
  • An Adult for Whom the State of Connecticut was the Statutory Parent
  • Birth Parent (of adult adoptee)
  • Non-adopted Adult Birth Siblings (with birth parent’s consent)
  • Birth Relatives (with birth parent’s consent)

What information is available?

  • Non-identifying and medical information (i.e., information associated with the family background of the birth parents including social, religious, ethnic, educational, and employment history, and the circumstances of your birth and adoption)
  • Identifying information (with consent of person being sought)

How does one access the information?

  • The agency that did the adoption would research their files to compile information for the requestor.

What if someone doesn’t know which agency did the adoption?

  • The Department of Children and Families, Office of Foster Care and Adoption Services, has a master database that lists all adoptions, both public and private, which have occurred in Connecticut since 1944. Information can be obtained by calling 860-550-6582, writing DCF Search Unit, 505 Hudson Street, Hartford, CT 06106 or e-mailing the Search Unit at the Connecticut Department of Children and Families at Annemarie.Stonoha@ct.gov
  • If the adoption was completed prior to 1944, the adoptee can contact directly the Probate Court that was involved in the adoption finalization.

What procedures are involved?

  • The person wishing to receive information or conduct a search must make their request in writing to the agency that completed their adoption and have their signature notarized as proof of their identity.
  • The agency will initially provide non-identifying information.
  • If the individual wishes to search, then a personal interview is required. The agency will then attempt to locate the person being sought and gain that person’s permission before any identifying information can be released to the requestor.
  • If consent is provided, the agency will assist in arranging contact in a way that is acceptable to both parties.
  • If the family member being contacted does not provide consent, then the agency that completed the adoption will not be able to disclose any information about the person being sought. If this occurs, the requestor would have the ability to complete a Reunion Registry form so that their contact information may be provided if the family member changes their mind about contact in the future.

Are there any costs involved?

  • If the adoption was through the State of Connecticut (a public agency), there are no costs associated with searching.
  • Private adoption agencies have a fee.

What if the individual searching currently lives in another state, but was adopted in Connecticut?

  • The person searching can receive the background information through the mail by sending the agency a notarized letter confirming their identity.
  • If they wish to search, they will have to arrange for a personal interview to be done by a licensed clinical social worker, psychologist or psychiatrist, or an adoption agency in the state in which they reside.

 

Adoption Healing Support Group

Jane Servadio

158 Cedarhurst Lane

Milford, CT 06460

(203) 874-2023


Reunion Registry

  • Each adoption agency also maintains a Reunion Registry that allows adult adoptees, birth parents, and birth relatives to indicate their desire for contact with their family members.
  • If both the adoptee and the relative have registered for contact, then contact will be initiated by the agency of adoption. The above parties can also update medical histories to be enclosed in the record.
  • It is the responsibility of the person registered to update their contact information including changes to their names, addresses or phone numbers.
  • To have your name added to the Reunion Registry, or to update a Reunion Registry Form, call the agency involved with the adoption to request a form that must be fully completed and notarized.

Adults who were once committed to the care of the State of Connecticut Department of Children and Families

For individuals who had been committed to the care of the Connecticut Department of Children and Families but not adopted, a request can be made to see copies of their file as permitted by Connecticut Statute 17a-28(1)(A), 17a-28 (5), and 17a-28 6(A) and 6(B). This applies to adults (age 18 or older) who were not adopted. If the Closed Records Division can access the file, it will be copied and sent to the individual in question, pending receipt of a notarized letter confirming their identity.

For any additional information:

call the Office of Foster Care and Adoption Services at (860) 550-6582, or

email: Annemarie.Stonoha@ct.gov , or

write: AnneMarie Stonoha
         Office of Foster and Adoption Services
         CT-Department of Children and Families
         505 Hudson Street 
         Hartford, CT 06106