Press Release

November 14, 2011

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Original Birth Certificates


Adoptee Requests for Original Birth Certificates Accepted for the First Time Tomorrow

SPRINGFIELD – Tomorrow, Tuesday, November 15, 2011 is the first day adopted or surrendered adults can submit a request for a non-certified copy of their original Illinois birth certificate. Under the amended Illinois Adoption Act (750 ILCS 50), adults born on or after January 1, 1946 in Illinois who were surrendered or adopted, can request a non-certified copy of their original Illinois birth certificate, which typically includes the birth parents’ name(s), age(s) and place(s) of birth.

“More than 2,000 people have contacted the Illinois Department of Public Health inquiring about filing a request on November 15, 2011 for a copy of their original birth certificate,” said Dr. Craig Conover, state department of public health acting director. “We anticipate our Division of Vital Records will receive numerous request forms tomorrow and in the coming days and we will work to process those requests as quickly as possible.”

How long it will take for an adopted or surrendered adult to receive a non-certified copy of an original birth certificate depends on a number of factors including, the completeness of the application, lack of an original birth record, the presence of an amended birth record or the need to contact an adoption agency or circuit court for an adoption decree.

Birth parents who surrendered their child for adoption and would like their identifying information to remain confidential during their lifetime, can submit a completed Birth Parent Preference Form. Approximately 350 preference forms have been submitted to the Department. While the Department will continue to accept Birth Parent Preference Forms after November 15, 2011, there is no way to ensure information was not already released prior to processing the Birth Parent Preference Form after that date.

Birth parents who prefer not to have their identifying information released can still confidentially provide medical information, such as genetically transmitted disease, to the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange (IARMIE) to be released to an adopted or surrendered child. Providing medical information may help an adopted or surrender person be proactive about health issues and live a longer, healthier life.

The Birth Parent Preference Form, medical questionnaire forms and the request form for an adopted or surrendered person to obtain a non-certified copy of their birth certificate, can be found at or by calling the Illinois Adoption Registry at 877-323-5299. The fee for submitting either form is $15, however, the fee will be waived for birth parents who complete the IARMIE medical questionnaire forms. All forms should be submitted to the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange. Adopted or surrendered persons must be 21 before receiving a non-certified copy of their original birth certificate.

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Illinois Department of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
Phone 217-782-4977
Fax 217-782-3987
TTY 800-547-0466
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