Minnesota Office of the Revisor of Statutes
[*Add Subtitle/link: Office]

Menu

Revisor of Statutes Menu

2005 Minnesota Statutes

This is a historical version of this statute section. Also view the most recent published version.

259.89 Access to original birth record information.

Subdivision 1. Request. An adopted person who is 19 years of age or over may request the commissioner of health to disclose the information on the adopted person's original birth record. The commissioner of health shall, within five days of receipt of the request, notify the commissioner of human services in writing of the request by the adopted person.

Subd. 2. Search. Within six months after receiving notice of the request of the adopted person, the commissioner of human services shall make complete and reasonable efforts to notify each parent identified on the original birth record of the adopted person. The commissioner, the commissioner's agents, and licensed child-placing agencies may charge a reasonable fee to the adopted person for the cost of making a search pursuant to this subdivision. Every licensed child-placing agency in the state shall cooperate with the commissioner of human services in efforts to notify an identified parent. All communications under this subdivision are confidential pursuant to section 13.02, subdivision 3.

For purposes of this subdivision, "notify" means a personal and confidential contact with the birth parents named on the original birth record of the adopted person. The contact shall not be by mail and shall be by an employee or agent of the licensed child-placing agency which processed the pertinent adoption or some other licensed child-placing agency designated by the commissioner of human services. The contact shall be evidenced by filing with the commissioner of health an affidavit of notification executed by the person who notified each parent certifying that each parent was given the following information:

(a) The nature of the information requested by the adopted person;

(b) The date of the request of the adopted person;

(c) The right of the parent to file, within 30 days of receipt of the notice, an affidavit with the commissioner of health stating that the information on the original birth record should not be disclosed;

(d) The right of the parent to file a consent to disclosure with the commissioner of health at any time; and

(e) The effect of a failure of the parent to file either a consent to disclosure or an affidavit stating that the information on the original birth record should not be disclosed.

Subd. 3. Failure to notify parent. If the commissioner of human services certifies to the commissioner of health an inability to notify a parent identified on the original birth record within six months, and if neither identified parent has at any time filed an unrevoked consent to disclosure with the commissioner of health, the information may be disclosed as follows:

(a) If the person was adopted prior to August 1, 1977, the person may petition the appropriate court for disclosure of the original birth record pursuant to section 259.61, and the court shall grant the petition if, after consideration of the interests of all known persons involved, the court determines that disclosure of the information would be of greater benefit than nondisclosure.

(b) If the person was adopted on or after August 1, 1977, the commissioner of health shall release the requested information to the adopted person.

If either parent identified on the birth record has at any time filed with the commissioner of health an unrevoked affidavit stating that the information on the original birth record should not be disclosed, the commissioner of health shall not disclose the information to the adopted person until the affidavit is revoked by the filing of a consent to disclosure by that parent.

Subd. 4. Release of information after notice. If, within six months, the commissioner of human services certifies to the commissioner of health notification of each parent identified on the original birth record pursuant to subdivision 2, the commissioner of health shall disclose the information requested by the adopted person 31 days after the date of the latest notice to either parent. This disclosure will occur if, at any time during the 31 days both of the parents identified on the original birth record have filed a consent to disclosure with the commissioner of health and neither consent to disclosure has been revoked by the subsequent filing by a parent of an affidavit stating that the information should not be disclosed. If only one parent has filed a consent to disclosure and the consent has not been revoked, the commissioner of health shall disclose, to the adopted person, original birth record information on the consenting parent only.

Subd. 5. Death of parent. Notwithstanding the provisions of subdivisions 3 and 4, if a parent named on the original birth record of an adopted person has died, and at any time prior to the death the parent has filed an unrevoked affidavit with the commissioner of health stating that the information on the original birth record should not be disclosed, the adopted person may petition the court of original jurisdiction of the adoption proceeding for disclosure of the original birth record pursuant to section 259.61. The court shall grant the petition if, after consideration of the interests of all known persons involved, the court determines that disclosure of the information would be of greater benefit than nondisclosure.

Subd. 6. Determination of eligibility for enrollment or membership in a federally recognized American Indian tribe. The state registrar shall provide a copy of an adopted person's original birth record to an authorized representative of a federally recognized American Indian tribe for the sole purpose of determining the adopted person's eligibility for enrollment or membership in the tribe.

HIST: 1981 c 311 s 39; 1982 c 545 s 24; 1982 c 584 s 5; 1984 c 654 art 5 s 58; 1986 c 444; 1989 c 88 s 1-3; 1989 c 282 art 2 s 167; 1994 c 631 s 31; 1999 c 245 art 8 s 40; 1Sp2001 c 9 art 15 s 32

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569