S2490A and A909 Summary:
of Adoptee Rights clarifying language and procedures for obtaining birth certificates and
medical histories of adoptees; allows adopted adults to learn who their birth parents are
when they reach the age of 18, subject to a contact preference filed by the birth parents.
COSPNSR: Addabbo, Avella, Ball, Breslin, Carlucci, Dilan, Espaillat, Flanagan, Gianaris, Golden, Hassell-Thompson, Hoylman, Krueger, Larkin, Latimer, Lavalle, Little, Montgomery, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Robach, Sampson, Stavisky
Plus many supporters, including the following:
(please write to them asking them to co-sponsor: Name, LOB Room Number, Albany NY 12247)
DEMOCRATS: Terry Gipson - Poughkeepsie (LOB 617), Tim Kennedy - Buffalo (LOB 506), Jeff Klein - Bronx (LOB 913), Ted O'Brien - Rochester (LOB 302), Andrea Stewart-Cousins - Yonkers (LOB 907), David Valesky - Syracuse (LOB 512)
REPUBLICANS: Patrick Gallivan - Warsaw/Geneseo (LOB 947), Mark Grisanti - Buffalo (LOB 609), Jack Martins - Long Island (LOB 946)
COSPNSR: Aubry, Benedetto, Borelli, Boyland, Cusick, Espinal, Garbarino, Goldfeder, Hooper, Mayer, Mosley, Otis, Pichardo, Rosa, Sepulveda, Titus
MLTSPNSR: Arroyo, Barrett, Barron, Brook-Krasny, Butler, Camara, Clark, Colton, Cook, Curran, Dinowitz, DiPietro, Duprey, Englebright, Fahy, Farrell, Gabryszak, Galef, Giglio, Gjonaj, Gottfried, Graf, Gunther, Hawley, Johns, Jordan, Katz, Kellner, Kolb, Lavine, Lifton, Lopez P, Lupardo, Lupinacci, Magee, Magnarelli, Maisel, Malliotakis, McDonough, McKevitt, Miller, Millman, Montesano, Moya, Oaks, Palmesano, Paulin, Peoples-Stokes, Perry, Pretlow, Ra, Raia, Ramos, Rivera, Roberts, Robinson, Rodriguez, Rosenthal, Ryan, Scarborough, Schimel, Simanowitz, Skartados, Stec, Stevenson, Thiele, Titone, Walter, Weisenberg, Wright, Zebrowski
Plus many supporters, including the following:
(please write to them asking them to co-sponsor: Name, LOB Room Number, Albany NY 12248)
DEMOCRATS: Harry Bronson - Rochester (LOB 422), Kevin Cahill - Kingston (LOB 716), Steven Cybrowitz - Brooklyn (LOB 627), David Gantt - Rochester (LOB 830), Andrew Hevesi - Queens (LOB 742), Rhoda Jacobs - Brooklyn (LOB 736), Ellen Jaffee - Pearl River (LOB 650), Phil Steck - Schenectady (LOB 819)
Bill S2490A and A909 - The Bill of Adoptee Rights amends
the Health Law by adding a new section, 4138-e
Allows all adoptees when they reach the age of eighteen the ability
to receive a copy of their original birth certificate provided they have
proper identification and pay a nominal fee, and to receive an updated medical
history form submitted to the health department by the birth parent.
The medical history form shall be prescribed by the Health Department.
A birth parent may at any time request a contact preference form that shall
accompany a birth certificate issued under this title. The contact preference form
provide the following information to be completed at the option of the birth parent.
(A) I would like to be contacted
(B) I would prefer to be contacted only through an intermediary
(C) I have completed a medical history form and have filed it with the department
(D) Please do not contact me. If I decide later that I would like to be contacted,
I will submit an updated contact preference form with the department.
I have completed an updated medical history form and have filed it with the health
The health department shall provide updated health information from the birth parent
to the adoptive parents of a minor and directly to the adopted person who has reached
the age of eighteen.
When it shall be impossible through good-faith efforts to provide a copy of the birth
certificate (as in the case of an adopted person born outside of, but adopted within
state of New York), the adopted person shall have the right to secure from a court of
competent jurisdiction or the adoption agency true and correct identifying information.
This bill will become law one year after the governor signs it. Within two years of the
effective date the governor shall appoint a voluntary citizens task force to review,
assess and report on the progress and administration of initiatives established with
New York Statewide Adoption
Supporting and notable
issues for the "Bill of Adoptee Rights", a piece of legislation that seeks to do
more than just gain adoptees' rights -- it is legislation that cares for everyone
1. This legislation fully
encourages the New York State Assembly and Senate Members to acknowledge and support
within a law, the lifelong health and well-being of adults who have been or will be
adopted in this state. It also has them by law recognize that the denial of access to
accurate and complete medical and self-identifying data of any citizen, is a violation of
that citizen's civil rights.
2. This legislation clearly
states that adoptees be given equal considerations permitted by law to all non-adopted
citizens. But it does so while providing for the need of privacy for that adopted citizen
and his/her birth and adoptive families.
3. All adoptees (whether
adopted in or outside of NYS) shall at the age of 18 be granted the right -- To have
access to and attain his/her Original (long form, line by line vault copy) Birth
Certificate. All adoptees will have the right to obtain from a court of competent
jurisdiction or the adoption agency the true and correct identifying information that
would have appeared on his/her original Birth Certificate, with a "hold harmless
clause" for releasing such information from any liability arising out of the
4. This legislation insures
that all updated information shall also be released to all parties involved. Adoptees,
under this legislation, are guaranteed their right to updated and current birth family
5. The contact preference
protects the civil rights of all birth parents and adoptees that do not want contact. This
preference can be rescinded at any time by the filing party.
6. Regardless of the Contact
Preference it will not diminish the right of the Adopted Person to receive updated health
information and their Birth Certificate.
7. This legislation also
assures within two years of passage that the Governor form a citizen's task force to
review, assess and report on the progress and administration of this legislation. It
states the individuals that shall be a part of this task force (equal numbers of adopted
persons, birth parents, adoptive parents and adoption professionals). It allows these
individuals to have full access to files from Children & Family Services, Surrogate
courts to enable complete and accurate reporting without comprise. It also within this law
states that this task force within one year will submit a written report to the
legislature and the public on:
- The number
of Birth Certificates requested by adopted persons.
- The number
of original uncertified Birth Certificates provided to adopted persons.
- The number
of contact preferences filled by birth parent(s).
- The number
of contact preferences rescinded by same parent or parents.
8. This legislation also
assures that additional information and data will be collected and accepted from birth
relatives and updated continuously. It further states that this data will be provided
within 90 days to either the adoptive parents of a minor or directly to the adult adopted
9. This legislation also
presents the importance and use of a Law Guardian or Guardian Ad Litem to honestly protect
the rights of the child.
10. This legislation also
presents the importance within its wording, behind all adopted persons having the right to
grow up into adulthood, leaving the stigma of forever being a child behind in the laws of
Remember this -- some
adoptees have been totally denied access to medical information and testing for certain
genetic diseases due to their lack of a family history. If ever there was a reason for the
adoption laws in NY to change, this is it. No one in this country should be denied their
right to practice preventative health care, but that is what is truly happening to
adoptees. Why should the status of adoption keep someone from knowing what medical
conditions their true blood line holds? Why should the status of adoption keep people from
knowing information or people? Adoptees are people and should have the same rights as any
other citizens in the USA -- but sadly they do not! Now we must come together to change
that and get NY State to recognize all of its citizens, adopted or not. We as
people all deserve to be complete, fulfilled beings with a true history and true identity
State Capitol Building,