Utah Adoption Registry

The Utah Adoption Registry is a voluntary, mutual consent registry that helps adult adoptees born in Utah and their birth parents and blood related siblings reunite with one another.

News Update 6/22/2021: New online registration application is now available! Click the 'Register Now' button to access the registration portal to re-register or to enter a new registration.

What the Utah Adoption Registry Offers You

Original Records

The Utah Adoption Registry is the only adoption registry with access to original pre-adoption birth certificate records for Utah births. No other adoption registry has access to all of the Utah original pre-adoption birth certificate records.

VOLUNTARY PARTICIPATION

The Utah Adoption Registry is a mutual consent registry, meaning that each person in the registry voluntarily registered and is willing to be known to their birth family. Whether you are an adult adoptee born in Utah or a birth parent or birth sibling of someone born in Utah, you can join the registry with confidence that you will only be matched with a birth family member who is seeking to find you.

ACCURATE MATCHES

Each match between a birth parent and an adult adoptee in the Utah Adoption Registry is 100% accurate because matches are done using information found on original pre-adoption birth certificate records.

Register Now

Join the Utah Adoption Registry

Joining the Utah Adoption Registry is easy!

Submit your Registration online

OR mail in your paper application.

Follow all the steps to submit your ID verification
and your payment and you will be registered!

Birth parents can attach their Non-Identifying Health History to their online registration so their adopted child can download it at any time after a match is verified, whether or not they choose to share other contact information. Birth parents can update that form with current information at any time. Click here to download the form: Non-Identifying Health, Genetic and Social History form for birth parents.

Testimonials

"Without the registry, I would not have known my biological grandmother. The registry brings families together."

- Chantelle Phelps, granddaughter

"I was on the registry for less than a week when I got a phone call that there was a match."

- Meagan Smith, adult adoptee

"I am glad there is a way to get the information we need as birth parents and adoptees."

- Deneal Dooley, birth mother

"Our reunion has been an absolute gift and we have grown very close. I couldn’t have asked for a better turn out. If only we had known sooner, my mom could’ve met her biological son but she passed just a few months before our reunion."

- Sonia Morgan, adult adoptee’s biological sister

"I registered and it was very fast. We had a match and were meeting each other in no time. It's been one of the best and happiest experiences of my life."

- Megan Wolf, birth mother

"Without the registry, I would not have known my biological grandmother. The registry brings families together."

- Chantelle Phelps, granddaughter

"I was on the registry for less than a week when I got a phone call that there was a match."

- Meagan Smith, adult adoptee

"I am glad there is a way to get the information we need as birth parents and adoptees."

- Deneal Dooley, birth mother

"Our reunion has been an absolute gift and we have grown very close. I couldn’t have asked for a better turn out. If only we had known sooner, my mom could’ve met her biological son but she passed just a few months before our reunion."

- Sonia Morgan, adult adoptee’s biological sister

"I registered and it was very fast. We had a match and were meeting each other in no time. It's been one of the best and happiest experiences of my life."

- Megan Wolf, birth mother

FAQ

What is the Utah Adoption Registry?

The Utah State Legislature established the Utah Adoption Registry in 1987. It is a valuable resource for adult adoptees born in Utah, their birth parents, and their birth siblings who are searching for one another. Pursuant to Utah Code 78B-6-144, it is set up to release identifying information to an adult adoptee born in Utah, their birth parent, or birth sibling only when both the adoptee and their birth parent or sibling consent to share information by joining the registry.

What has changed in the new application portal released June 2021?

* Log in any time to review your information and check the status of your match search.
* Update the match information you wish to share with your match.
* Update the information you wish to receive from your match.
* Birth parents may decide to use an intermediary instead of sharing their own information.
* Birth parents may register their consent to release a non-certified copy of the original birth certificate to the adoptee with or without releasing any other contact information.
* Birth parents may upload documents such as non-identifying health and social history or other information for the adoptee to access. These documents can be made available with or without sharing any other contact information.
* Adoptees may request a copy of their original non-certified birth certificate after birth parent consent or if their birth parents are deceased.
* Adoptees may login any time to download their non-certified original birth certificate or other documents submitted by their birth parent after their match is verified.

What if I already registered in the old system?

If you have registered in the past, there will be no charge to re-register in our new application portal. Please DO enter a new registration in our new application because you now have the option of entering a lot more information than was registered in our old system.

You do not need a password or login from the old system, the old system did not have a login feature. You will create a UtahID login, or use your existing UtahID login to create a new registration for the Adoption Registry.

When you get to the payment info page at the end of the registration, click the box indicating you have registered previously and your registration fee will be waived.

If you choose not to re-register in the new application, your previous registration data will be made available for matches in the new system. However, you will not have the advantage of the new online features and options available. Your data will not be streamlined for efficient matching if you do not re-register in the new application.

Who is eligible to join the Utah Adoption Registry?

To join the registry, you must be an adult adoptee born in Utah, a birth parent of an adoptee, or a birth sibling of an adoptee. Adoptees and siblings must be 18 years or older to join the registry.
If there is a a sibling of the same birth parent who is under the age of 18 years, and who was raised in the same family setting as the adult adoptee, the office may not disclose the requested identifying information to that adult adoptee or the adoptee’s birth parent.

How can I join the Utah Adoption Registry?

Joining the Utah Adoption Registry is easy!

Register online by clicking ‘Register Now’ at the top of this page.

OR
Mail in your Application form with your payment and a copy of your ID.

Once I complete the application process and pay the registry fee, how long will it take before I find out if there is a match?

It can take 8 weeks or more for our staff to complete the first search. If you have a match who is already registered and positively identified, our staff will send you a notification of the match as soon as we verify it. If no match is found, your online account will show a status of ‘Searched – no match’.

Your information will remain in the database to be searched every time a new individual registers.

Once we have matched an adoptee with a birth parent who consents to allow them access to the non-certified birth certificate, it may take an additional 6-8 weeks to research the files and attach the birth certificate for downloading.

What happens if I start the application process online but never pay a fee and never complete the additional steps required to register?

The application process begins online, but if you fail to send in your $25 fee or to verify your identity by sending a copy of your driver license or other identity documents, your information will not be activated in the Registry for matches.

Who runs the Utah Adoption Registry?

Pursuant to Utah Code 78B-6-144, the Utah Department of Health, Office of Vital Records and Statistics administers the Utah Adoption Registry.

What distinguishes the Utah Adoption Registry from other adoption registries and other methods used to find adult adoptees and birth parents?

The Utah Adoption Registry is the only official adoption registry administered by the State of Utah Department of Health, Office of Vital Records and Statistics (OVRS). The OVRS is the only entity other than a Utah court authorized to access sealed adoption information and it is the only place where pre-adoption birth certificate records for all Utah births can be found. With consent from both parties, our staff can make a 100% positive match between an adult adoptee and a birth parent by using the information in the sealed file, without the expense of DNA testing or hiring a private investigator.

As a birth parent or adult adoptee, am I required to join the Utah Adoption Registry?

No. Joining the Utah Adoption Registry is voluntary and no identifying information is released unless both an adult adoptee and a birth parent or a birth sibling consent to join and share information. Choosing to connect with an adult adoptee or birth family is a personal choice and we do not try to influence this decision. Our staff only act as a resource to those who have already decided that they would like to connect with members of their birth family.

How do I update my contact information in the Utah Adoption Registry?

Once you have registered in the new online system, you can login to your account to update your information at any time by clicking the ‘Login’ button at the top of this page. There is no fee to update your contact information or change your elections online.

OR
Submit a paper application form and check the box for ‘Update’.

If you submit your update on a paper form and/or change the information used to search for a match, there will be a $10 update fee.

If you registered in the old system prior to June 2021, you will need to create a new account in our new online system in order to be able to update your contact information online. There will be no fee for existing registrants to create a new registration in the new application.

What if I joined the registry in the past but changed my mind and no longer want to be on it?

It is possible to register your non-consent in the Registry. Click the ‘Login’ button at the top of the page to access the online registration portal and you may change your consent choices at any time. There is no fee to change your elections online.

OR
Submit a paper application with your choice to not share or receive information (Non-consent) and check the box for ‘Update’.

If you submit your update on a paper form there may be a $10 update fee.

If there is a match, what information from the sealed adoption file can be shared with the birth parent and the adult adoptee?

If an adult adoptee is positively matched with a birth parent or sibling, our staff will share the contact information they each have given us so they may contact each other.

As of November 1, 2021 House Bill 345 will go into effect which allows a non-certified original birth certificate to be shared with an adult adoptee with a birth parent’s consent whether or not either party chooses to share any other identifying information.

If there is a Non-Identifying Health, Genetic and Social History form filled out and uploaded by the birth parent, the adoptee can have access to that either by joining the Registry or by filling out the application for non-identifying health history.

What if an adult adoptee wants to obtain information about the medical or health history of their birth parents? Is it possible to obtain this information without joining the Registry?

Yes. You may request a search for medical or health history information submitted by a birth parent by completing an application for non-identifying health history. There is a $25 fee. This fee is distinct from the $25 Adoption Registry fee. Birth parents are invited to fill out this non-identifying health history form at the time of adoption and the form is included in the adoption file, if completed.

Birth parents now have the option of uploading their non-identifying health, genetic, and social history form to the Adoption Registry. Birth parents can update their information by logging in and uploading a new version any time.

If the birth parent has uploaded their non-identifying health, genetic and social history documents to the Utah Adoption Registry, the Adoptee who chooses to join the Registry and has a confirmed match will be able to download those documents at any time by logging in to their Adoption Registry account.

Is it possible for a birth parent to not identify who they are to their birth child but to share non-identifying information or a letter with them?

Yes. Birth parents can upload or send in the non-identifying health, genetic, and social history form or a letter at any time. They may join the Adoption Registry and specify that they do not want to share their contact information with their birth child. This non-identifying information can then be shared with their birth child after the child reaches the age of 18 years, if the birth child also joins the Registry or submits an application for non-identifying health history.

A birth parent may also choose to give consent to their adopted child to have access to their non-certified original birth certificate without sharing any additional contact information.

What limitations are there in the Utah Adoption Registry?

One limitation of the Utah Adoption Registry is that it only has information related to Utah births. If an adoptee was born outside of Utah, the Utah Adoption Registry will not have information for them or their birth parents.

Another limitation is that although matches between consenting adoptees and birth parents do happen, it is common for someone to join the registry and never be matched with their birth family. The Utah Adoption Registry is voluntary and both an adoptee and a birth parent must join before our staff can share identifying information. For this reason, it is likely that one party may never consent or they may never know about the registry.

Other factors that make it difficult to match registrants are lack of the father’s name on the original birth certificate or if a birth mother used an alias name at the hospital at the time of birth. It is also possible that a birth parent forgets the actual date or location of the birth. These factors all can reduce the likelihood of a match being made.

Why is it important that I provide as much information as possible in my application?

The more information someone provides in the application, the quicker a match can be made and verified and the more likely a match between an adoptee and birth parent or sibling is to be made at all.

How many birth parents, birth siblings, and adult adoptees are in the Utah Adoption Registry?

As of June 22, 2021, there were 2,750 individuals in the Utah Adoption Registry. This includes 1,824 adoptees born in Utah, 795 birth parents, and 131 birth siblings.

Can a birth sibling of an adult adoptee join the registry?

Yes, a blood related sibling of an adult adoptee born in Utah is able to join the registry to search for their birth sibling. The sibling must be over 18 with at least one common birth parent.

What happens if no match is made?

If no match is found, we will update your online status to ‘Searched – no Match’. Your information will be kept in the Registry and searched when new registrants join. We will contact you if there is a match in the future. The Registry cannot connect you with a member of your birth family if they have not registered with the Voluntary Utah Adoption Registry.

If a match is found, how is contact information exchanged?

If the Utah Adoption Registry finds a match between consenting parties, we will contact the adult adoptee born in Utah and the birth parent or birth sibling by email or phone with the information their match has given us to share. Our staff will also mail a letter to both parties. We will only share the contact information you give permission to share with your match.

Who do I contact with questions about the Utah Adoption Registry?

Email: adoptions@utah.gov
Phone: (801) 538-6105 M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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