Missouri House votes to open adoptee birth certificates

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – The Missouri House has passed legislation that would make it easier for people who were adopted to access their original birth certificates.

Lawmakers voted 125-28 Thursday for a bill allowing Missouri-born adoptees to access their original birth certificates when they turn 18.

The bill now goes to the Senate.

Rep. Don Phillips said his bill would help reform an outdated record system. Other supporters said adoptees can learn important health information only from their birth parents.

Adoptees currently can only obtain their original birth crtificates through a court order. They can access identifying information in their adoption file if their biological parents consent or die, but that remains sealed if their biological parents cannot be found.

The proposal’s critics said it is wrong to change adoption arrangements already in place.

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