TITLE 77: PUBLIC HEALTH
CHAPTER I: DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH
SUBCHAPTER e: VITAL RECORDS
PART 500 ILLINOIS VITAL RECORDS CODE
SECTION 500.47 ILLINOIS ADOPTION REGISTRY AND INFORMATION EXCHANGE


 

Section 500.47  Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange

 

a)         As used in this Section:

 

            "Adopted person" means a person who was adopted pursuant to the laws in effect at the time of the adoption (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Adoptive parent" means a person who has become a parent through the legal process of adoption (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Agency"  means  a  public  child welfare agency or a licensed child welfare agency (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Birth  father"  means  the  biological  father  of  an adopted  or surrendered person who is named on  the original certificate  of  live birth  or  on  a  consent  or surrender document, or a biological father whose paternity has been established by  a  judgment  or  order  of  the court, pursuant to the Illinois Parentage Act of 1984 (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Birth  mother"  means  the  biological  mother  of  an adopted  or surrendered person (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Birth parent" means a birth mother or birth father of an adopted or surrendered person (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Birth  sibling"  means the adult full or half sibling of an adopted or surrendered person (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Council" means the Adoption Registry Advisory Council created under Section 18.07 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Denial of Information Exchange" means an affidavit completed  by  a registrant  with  the Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange denying the release of identifying information (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Department" means the Department of Public Health.

 

            "Information Exchange Authorization" means an affidavit completed by a registrant with the Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange authorizing the release of identifying information (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Medical Questionnaire"  means the  medical history questionnaire completed by a registrant of the Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Proof of death" means a certified copy of a death certificate (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Registrant" or "registered  party"  means  a  birth parent,  birth sibling,  adopted  or surrendered person over the age of 21, or adoptive parent or legal guardian of an adopted or surrendered person  under  the age  of  21  who has filed an Illinois Adoption Registry Application or Registration Identification Form with the Registry (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

            "Statistical records" mean non-identifying numerical data tallying the total number of registrations filed by adopted persons, surrendered persons, non-surrendered birth sibilings, adoptive parents, birth parents, and legal guardians; and the total number of registry matches made.

 

            "Surrendered person" means a person whose parents' rights have  been surrendered or terminated but who has not been adopted (Section 18.06 of the Adoption Act).

 

b)         The Department of Public Health will:

 

1)         Maintain the Illinois Adoption Registry, Information Exchange, and  the Medical  Information  Exchange under the Adoption Act to assist the voluntary exchange  of information between mutually consenting birth parents or birth siblings and mutually consenting adoptive parents or legal guardians of adopted or surrendered persons under the age of 21 or adopted or surrendered  persons  21  years  of  age or older.

 

2)         Inform the public about the Adoption Registry and information exchanges through public service announcements, media coverage and, for a minimum of  4 years, through  notices   enclosed   with  driver's license renewal applications.

 

3)         Notify all parties who registered with the Illinois Adoption Registry before January  1, 2000 of the Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange.

 

4)         Maintain an informational Internet site where interested parties may access information about the Illinois Adoption  Registry and Information Exchange and download all necessary  application forms.

 

5)         Maintain or aggregate statistical  records and informational material  regarding the  Registry and Registry participation for periodic distribution to the public.

 

c)         Effective with the establishment of an Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange, the Department will provide information about Adoption Registry services.  The address and telephone number of the Adoption Registry is as follows:

 

            Adoption Registry

            Illinois Department of Public Health

            Division of Vital Records

            605 W. Jefferson

            Springfield, Illinois 62702-6553

            [Toll free] 877-323-5299 or 217-557-5159

 

d)         When  a person registers with the Illinois Adoption Registry and  completes  an  Illinois  Adoption   Registry Application or a Registration  Identification  Form, the Registry shall establish a new Adoption/Surrender Records File for that person.  An established  Adoption/Surrender Records  File  shall  be limited to the following items:

 

1)         The General Information Section of an Illinois Adoption Registry Application, the Registration Identification Form, the Medical Questionnaire, and the Information Exchange Authorization or Denial that have been voluntarily completed by the adopted or surrendered person or his or her adoptive parents, legal guardians, birth parents, or birth siblings.  The Department of Public Health shall act according to the most recently filed authorization or denial unless that authorization or denial has expired under subsection (f).

 

2)         Photographs and written statements voluntarily provided by a registrant for the  adopted  or  surrendered person or his or her adoptive parents, legal guardians, birth parents, or birth siblings.  The photographs shall be submitted in an unsealed envelope no larger than 8 1/2" x  11" and shall  not  include identifying information about a person other than the registrant who submitted them. Identifying information submitted about persons other than the registrant  shall  be redacted by the Department or the information shall be returned to the registrant for removal of that identifying information.

 

3)         Any  Information  Exchange  Authorization  or  Denial of Information Exchange that has been filed by a registrant.  The Department of Public Health shall act according to the most recently filed authorization or denial unless that authorization or denial has expired under subsection (f).

 

4)         For  all adoptions finalized after January 1, 2000, copies of the original certificate of live birth  and the  certificate  of adoption.

 

5)         Updated  addresses  submitted  by  a registered party about himself or herself.

 

6)         Proof of death that has been submitted by an  adopted or  surrendered  person,  adoptive  parent,  legal guardian,  birth parent, or birth sibling.

 

e)         The Department will establish and maintain  a Registry to in writing only provide  identifying  information  to mutually consenting adult adopted or surrendered persons, birth parents, adoptive  parents,  legal  guardians,  and  birth  siblings.  Before identifying information is released, the Deputy State Registrar and Adoption Registry director must review and only approve the exchange of identifying information if the release is allowed under the requirements of this Part and the Adoption Act. Identifying information includes the following items:

 

1)         The name and last known address of the  consenting person or persons.

 

2)         A  copy  of  the Illinois Adoption Registry Application of the consenting person or persons.

 

3)         A copy of the original certificate of live  birth of  the adopted person. Written  authorization  from all parties identified must be received before the disclosure of the respective party's identifying information.

 

4)         A copy of the completed Medical Questionnaire.

 

f)         After a child is surrendered for  adoption, during  the adoption  proceedings, or after the adoption, either birth parent or both birth parents may file with the Registry  a Birth Parent  Registration  Identification  Form  and  an Information Exchange Authorization or a Denial of Information Exchange.

 

            A birth sibling 21 years of age or older who was not surrendered for adoption, and who has submitted proof of death for a deceased birth parent who did not file a Denial of Information Exchange with the Registry before his or her death, may file a Registration Identification Form and an Information Exchange Authorization or a Denial of Information Exchange.  If the birth sibling of an adopted or surrendered person was not born in Illinois, then that birth sibling must submit a certified copy of his or her birth certificate with the registration.

 

            An adopted person over the age of 21 or still under guardianship, or a surrendered person over the age of 21, or an adoptive parent or legal guardian of an adopted or surrendered person under the age of 21 may file with the Registry a Registration Identification Form and an Information Exchange Authorization or a Denial of Information Exchange.  If registering as the legal guardian of an adopted or surrendered person, then a certified copy of the court order establishing the guardianship must be submitted with the registration.  If an adoptive parent or legal guardian of an adopted or surrendered person under the age of 21 files a registration, authorization, or denial, then that registration, authorization, or denial expires when the adopted or surrendered person attains 21 years of age unless the guardianship extends beyond that time, in which case the registration expires when the guardianship expires.  After expiration, the Department shall then not release any Registry information and shall close that adoption/surrender records file until the now competent adult adopted or surrendered person files with the Registry a Registration Identification Form,  Information Exchange Authorization, or Denial of Information Exchange.

 

g)         The Department will supply to the adopted  or surrendered person, or his or her adoptive parents or legal guardians, and to the birth parents identifying information only if both the adopted or surrendered person, or his or her adoptive parents or legal guardians, and the  birth  parents have filed with the Registry an Information Exchange Authorization and the information at the  Registry indicates  that  the consenting  adopted or surrendered person or the child of the consenting adoptive parents or legal guardians is the child of the consenting birth parents.  The  Department will  supply  to adopted or surrendered  persons who are birth siblings identifying information only if both siblings have filed with the Registry  an  Information  Exchange Authorization  and the  information  at the Registry indicates that the consenting  siblings  have  one  or  both  birth  parents in common.  Identifying  information will be supplied to consenting birth siblings who were adopted or surrendered if the consenting sibling is 21 years  of  age or  older. Identifying information will be supplied to consenting birth siblings who were not adopted or surrendered if the consenting sibling  is  21 years  of  age or older, has proof of death of the common birth parent, if one birth parent was in common or proof of death of both parents if both were in common, and the common birth parent or common birth parents did not file a Denial of Information Exchange with the Registry before his or her death.

 

h)         A birth parent, birth sibling, adopted or surrendered person, or adoptive parents or legal guardians may notify the Registry of their desire not to have their identity revealed or may revoke any previously filed Information Exchange Authorization or Medical Questionnaire/Medical Information Exchange Release  by  completing  and filing  with  the  Registry  a Registry Identification Form along with a Denial  of  Information  Exchange or modified Information Exchange Authorization.  The Illinois   Adoption   Registry Application  does  not need to be completed to file a Denial of Information Exchange.  An adopted or surrendered person or his  or  her adoptive  parents  or legal guardians, birth sibling, or birth parent may revoke a  Denial  of Information  Exchange or Denial of Medical Information Exchange Release by  filing  an  Information Exchange Authorization.   The Department of Public Health shall act according to the most recently filed authorization or denial unless that authorization or denial has expired under subsection (f).

 

i)          Information  submitted  to  the Registry is confidential and gathered by the State to assist the exchange of updated medical data and contact information between adopted and surrendered persons and other registered parties. Information exchanged through the Registry is not admissible as evidence nor discoverable in an action in a court, tribunal, board, agency, or  commission, except as provided in subsection (i)(1).  Disclosure  of information in violation of the Adoption Act is a Class A misdemeanor (see Section 18.8 of the Adoption Act).

 

1)         Information from the Registry may not  be  disclosed, except as authorized by the Adoption Act, including under Section 18.1(f) of that Act, only:

 

A)        Upon a Court Order, which order shall name the person or persons entitled to the  information.

 

B)        To  the adopted  or  surrendered person, adoptive parents or legal guardians, birth sibling,  or birth  parent  if both  the  adopted  or surrendered  person, or his or her adoptive parents or legal guardians, and his or her birth parent, both birth parents, or birth siblings, have filed  with the Registry an Information Exchange Authorization and have otherwise met the conditions of this Part.

 

C)        As authorized under Section 18.3(h)  of  the Adoption Act.

 

D)        If requested by an adopted person, a copy of the certificate of live birth shall only be released to the adopted person under the conditions of this Part if he or she was  born in  Illinois and is the subject of an Information Exchange Authorization filed by one of his or her  birth parents or non-surrendered birth siblings.

 

2)         A person who willfully provides unauthorized disclosure of information filed with the  Registry  or who knowingly or intentionally files false information with the Registry is  guilty  of  a Class  A  misdemeanor and is liable for damages under Section 18.1(f) of the Adoption Act.

 

3)         Identifying information submitted about persons other than the registrant  shall  be redacted by the Department or the information shall be returned to the registrant for removal of that identifying information. The Department shall redact identifying information provided to it about a party who has not consented to the disclosure of the identifying information.

 

j)          Upon meeting the requirements of this Part, the Registry shall release identifying information in writing only as specified  on the Information Exchange Authorization to the following mutually consenting  registered parties and provide  them with photographs that have been placed in the Adoption/Surrender Records File and are specifically intended for the registered parties:

 

1)         An  adult  adopted or surrendered person and one of his or her birth parents or birth siblings who have both filed with the Registry an Information Exchange Authorization specifying the  other consenting party, if information available to the Registry confirms that the consenting adopted or surrendered  person is a birth relative of the consenting birth parent or sibling.

 

2)         The  adoptive  parent  or legal guardian of an adopted or surrendered person under the age of 21 and one of his or  her  birth parents  or  birth  siblings who  have  both  filed with the Registry an Information Exchange Authorization specifying the other  consenting  party if the information available to the Registry confirms that  the  child  of the consenting adoptive parent or legal guardian is a birth relative of the consenting birth parent or birth sibling.

 

3)         If a registrant has completed a Medical Questionnaire  and  has  consented to its disclosure, that Questionnaire shall be released to any registered party who has indicated his/her desire to receive the information on his or  her  Illinois Adoption  Registry Application  if information available to the Registry confirms that the consenting parties are birth relatives  or  that  the  consenting birth relative  and  the  child  of  the consenting adoptive parents or legal guardians are birth relatives.

 

A)        If a registrant is the subject of a Denial of Information Exchange filed by another party to the adoption, the Registry shall not release identifying information to either registrant.

 

B)        If a registrant is the subject of a Denial of Medical Information Exchange filed by another party to the adoption, the Registry shall not release the Medical Questionnaire to either registrant.

 

k)         The forms for the Adoption Registry Application, Birth Parent Registration  Identification, Adopted Person Registration Identification, Surrendered Person Registration Identification, Non-surrendered Birth Sibling Registration Identification, Adoptive Parent Registration Identification, Legal Guardian Registration Identification, Information Exchange Authorization, Denial of Information Exchange, and Medical Questionnaire are included as Illustrations in Appendix E of this Part.

 

1)         Registration with  the Illinois Adoption Registry and Medical Information Exchange is effective upon the filing with the Registry of the  applicant's  completed Illinois  Adoption Registry Application.  Registration and changes must be made using the prescribed forms.  The Department shall send to a registrant a written confirmation of the registration or subsequent changes.  No other information pertaining to the receipt or status of a registrant's application shall be released without the registrant's written request and proof of identification.

 

2)         When  an  Illinois  Adoption  Registry Application, Information Exchange Authorization, or a Denial of Information Exchange or Release  is  executed in a foreign country, the execution must be acknowledged or affirmed before an officer of the United States consular services.  If the person signing an Information Exchange Authorization  or a Denial of Information is in the military service of the United States, the execution of the document may be acknowledged before a commissioned officer  and  the signature of the officer on the certificate must be verified or acknowledged  before  a  notary  public  or by  other procedure of the armed forces.

 

3)         A registrant may complete all or any part of the Illinois Adoption Registry form.  The Illinois Adoption Registry forms, required documents, and affidavits submitted to the Registry shall be accompanied by a copy of proof of identification.  Accepted forms of identification include a driver's license, state or federal identification card, military identification card, passport, or other government issued identification card with a photograph, but does not include a firearm owner's identification card.

 

4)         The registrant must pay a $40 fee for registering with the Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange. This fee will be waived, however, for all adopted or surrendered persons, adoptive parents, legal guardians, birth  parents, and birth siblings who complete a Medical Questionnaire at the time of registration and authorize its release to specified registered  parties,  and  for  adoptive parents registering within 12 months after the finalization of the  adoption.  In addition, the Department will not charge a fee for the update, withdrawl, or revocation of a form.

 

l)          The Adoption Registry Advisory Council is chaired  by  the Director  of  Public Health or the Director's designee.  The Council will:

 

1)         Advise  the  Department  on  the  development  of rules, procedures, and forms used by the Illinois Adoption Registry and Information Exchange.

 

2)         Make recommendations regarding the procedures, tools  and technology that will ensure efficient and effective operation of the Registry.

 

3)         Submit a report of statistical records to the Governor and General Assembly.

 

4)         Assist the Department with the development, publication, and circulation  of  an informational  pamphlet that describes the purpose, function, and mechanics of the Illinois Adoption  Registry and Information Exchange, including information about who is eligible  to  register  and  how  to register; information about the questions and  concerns that registrants  may  develop  when  they register  or  when they receive information from the Registry; and a list of services, programs, groups, and informational websites  that are  available  to  assist  registrants  with their  questions  and concerns.

 

(Source:  Amended at 24 Ill. Reg. 11882, effective July 26, 2000)