In 2013, House Bill 61 represented hope to Ohioans adopted between January 1, 1964 and September 18, 1996. Near the end of the year, the bill was passed by the Ohio Legislature and signed into law. It will take effect in 2015.
Previously, if you were born in the above timeframe, you were unable to access your adoption files. This included not being able to access your birth certificate without a court order. Those born before January 1, 1964 or after September 18, 1996 did not have the same restrictions.
The new law allows all Ohioans the ability to obtain their entire adoption files provided they meet the minimum requirements:
(1) They are 18 years of age;
(2) They make the necessary request to the Ohio Department of Health;
(3) They pay $20; and
(4) The biological parents did not ask that the files be sealed.
This legislation equals the playing field for all adopted Ohioans, and allows them better access to their own records. It is estimated the law applies to 400,000 people.
If you have questions about adoptions and domestic law, please contact Lardiere McNair LLC. To read the full bill as it was passed by the house, click here.