Published: March 29, 2022
By: Lura Stabiler
BATON ROUGE, La. (LSU Manship School News Service) – The House voted 75-21 Monday night to advance a bill to grant adopted people access to their original birth certificates with their birth parents’ names.
Rep. Charles Owen, R-Rosepine, sponsored the bill, which would grant the right to adoptees age 24 or older to learn the identity of their birth parents. He chose that age because of Louisiana’s forced inheritance laws. After 24, a child is not entitled to inheritance.
Currently, the only way for an adopted person to access their original birth certificate is to appear in front of a judge with compelling reasons. Compelling reasons can be topics such as health and inheritance. This is not possible without hiring a lawyer, which Owen believes is not possible for all Louisiana citizens.
“Grown people should have access to their documents,” said Owen.
Questions arose about whether the bill would violate the privacy of birth parents. When children are adopted, they receive new birth certificates with the names of their adoptive parents. But, Owen argued that the bill is about letting a person access a vital government record with his or her name on it rather than initiating meetings with parents.
Read more at KALB