REFERENCE TITLE: adoption; original birth certificate; release
State of Arizona
House of Representatives
Second Regular Session
Representatives Roberts: Andrade, Biasiucci, Blackman, Blanc, Butler, Cano, Carroll, Cobb, Cook, DeGrazia, Dunn, Engel, Finchem, Hernandez A, Lieberman, Longdon, Osborne, Powers Hannley, Rivero, Rodriguez, Shah, Sierra, Teller, Toma, Tsosie, Senators Alston, Bowie, Livingston, Mesnard, Steele
amending sections 8‑121, 36‑322 and 36‑337, Arizona Revised Statutes; amending Title 36, chapter 3, article 3, Arizona Revised Statutes, by adding section 36-340; relating to birth certificates.
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Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Arizona:
Section 1. Section 8-121, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
8-121. Confidentiality of information; exceptions
A. It is unlawful, except for purposes for which files and records or social records or parts thereof or information therefrom have been released pursuant to subsection C of this section or section 8‑120, 8‑129, or 8‑134 or 36‑340, or except for purposes permitted allowed by order of the court, for any person to disclose, receive or make use of, or authorize, knowingly permit allow, participate in or acquiesce in the use of, any information involved in any proceeding under this article directly or indirectly derived from the files, records, reports or other papers compiled pursuant to this article, or acquired in the course of the performance of official duties until one hundred years after the date of the order issued pursuant to section 8‑116. After one hundred years has elapsed from the date of the order issued pursuant to section 8‑116 the court shall transfer all files, records, reports and other documents in possession of the court relating to the adoption to the Arizona state library, archives and public records. The items transferred pursuant to this subsection shall be available for public inspection during business hours and may be made available in an alternative format.
B. The provisions of This section shall does not be construed to prohibit persons employed by the court, the division or an agency from conducting the investigations or performing other duties pursuant to this article within the normal course of their employment.
C. This section does not prohibit persons employed by the court, the division, an attorney participating or assisting in a direct placement adoption pursuant to section 8‑130 or an agency from providing partial or complete identifying information between a birth parent and adoptive parent when the parties mutually agree to share specific identifying information and make a written request to the court, the division or the agency.
D. A person may petition the court to obtain information relating to an adoption in the possession of the court, the division or any agency or attorney involved in the adoption. Nonidentifying information may be released by the court pursuant to section 8‑129. The court shall not release identifying information unless the person requesting the information has established a compelling need for disclosure of the information or consent has been obtained pursuant to subsection E of this section or from the birth parent pursuant to section 8‑106. If a compelling need for disclosure of information is established, the court may decide what information, if any, should be disclosed and to whom and under what conditions disclosure may be made.
E. An adoptee who is eighteen years of age or older or a birth parent may file at any time with the court and the agency, division or attorney who participated in the adoption a notarized statement granting consent, withholding consent or withdrawing a consent previously given for the release of confidential information. If an adoptee who is eighteen years of age or older and the birth mother or birth father have filed a notarized statement granting consent to the release of confidential information, the court may disclose information, except identifying information relating to a birth parent who did not grant written consent, to the adoptee or birth parent.
F. This section does not prohibit a person from notifying a birth parent of the death of a child that the birth parent has placed for adoption.
Sec. 2. Section 36-322, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
36-322. Sealing a certificate
A. The state registrar shall seal a certificate and evidentiary documents when the state registrar amends the registered certificate.
B. Unless required by a court order and except as provided in section 36‑340, the state registrar shall not issue a copy of a certificate or other record sealed pursuant to this section.
Sec. 3. Section 36-337, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended to read:
36-337. Amending birth certificates
A. The state registrar shall amend the birth certificate for a person born in this state when the state registrar receives any of the following:
1. Except as provided in subsection D of this section, an adoption certificate or a court order for adoption required pursuant to section 36‑336.
2. A voluntary acknowledgment of paternity pursuant to section 25‑812.
3. For a person who has undergone a sex change operation or has a chromosomal count that establishes the sex of the person as different than in the registered birth certificate, both of the following:
(a) A written request for an amended birth certificate from the person or, if the person is a child, from the child's parent or legal guardian.
(b) A written statement by a physician that verifies the sex change operation or chromosomal count.
4. A court order ordering an amendment to a birth certificate.
B. The state registrar shall change the name of the father on a registered birth certificate if:
1. The state registrar receives an administrative order or a court order ordering the state registrar to change the father's name on the registered birth certificate.
2. Paternity is established through a voluntary acknowledgement of paternity pursuant to section 25‑812.
C. If a registered birth certificate does not exist for a person born in this state who is requesting to amend a birth certificate the person making that request shall comply with the requirements established by rule.
D. The state registrar shall retain the information on a person's registered birth certificate after the person's adoption if all of the following documents are submitted to the state registrar:
1. A written request to retain the information signed by the adoptive parent or a court order containing a request to retain the information on the registered birth certificate.
2. A written statement agreeing to retain the mother's name on the person's registered birth certificate, signed by the mother, or if the mother is deceased, a certified copy of a registered death certificate for the mother.
3. If there is a father's name stated on the registered birth certificate, a written statement agreeing to retain the father's name on the person's registered birth certificate, signed by the father, or if the father is deceased, a certified copy of a registered death certificate for the father.
E. If the state registrar amends a registered birth certificate following adoption, the birth certificate shall state the city or county of birth stated on the existing registered birth certificate and the date of birth stated on the existing registered birth certificate. The state registrar may omit the exact location of birth on the registered birth certificate.
F. If a local registrar or deputy local registrar amends a registered birth certificate, the local registrar or deputy local registrar shall forward all evidentiary documents provided to create the new birth certificate to the state registrar.
G. If the state registrar amends a registered birth certificate, the state registrar shall seal the previously registered birth certificate and the evidentiary documents provided to amend the registered birth certificate. The state registrar shall provide access to a sealed certificate or evidentiary documents only pursuant to section 36‑322, or 36‑340 or a court order issued in this state or as prescribed by rule.
H. If the state registrar receives a court order annulling an adoption, the state registrar shall unseal the sealed registered birth certificate and shall seal the new birth certificate and evidentiary documents.
Sec. 4. Title 36, chapter 3, article 3, Arizona Revised Statutes, is amended by adding section 36-340, to read:
36-340. Adopted individual; sealed original birth certificate; contact preference; medical history; confidentiality
A. The state registrar shall provide to an individual a copy of the individual's original birth certificate that has been sealed due to an adoption and any evidence of the adoption that is held with the original birth certificate, if all of the following are true:
1. The individual is at least eighteen years of age.
2. The individual was born in this state.
3. The individual submits to the state registrar a written request to receive a copy of the original birth certificate.
B. The copy of the original birth certificate shall clearly indicate that it is not a certified copy and that it may not be used for legal purposes.
C. The fees and procedures that apply to obtaining a copy of a registered certificate apply to obtaining a copy of an original birth certificate pursuant to this section.
D. The state registrar shall develop a contact preference form to be filled out by a birth parent, at the birth parent's option, and kept with the original birth certificate as provided in this section. The preference form shall indicate if the birth parent:
1. Wants to do any of the following:
(a) Be contacted by the individual who receives the copy of the original birth certificate.
(b) Be contacted only through an intermediary.
(c) Not be contacted.
2. Has completed and filed with the state registrar a medical history form.
E. The state REGISTRAR shall develop a medical history form to be completed by a birth parent at the birth parent's option.
F. The contact preference form and the medical history form are confidential. If the birth parent files the forms, the state registrar shall seal the forms together and retain them with the original birth certificate. The forms shall be given to the individual who receives the original birth certificate. The state registrar may not keep a copy of the contact preference form or the medical history form.