Under current Texas state law, it can be difficult for an adopted child to access their birth records, even after they have turned eighteen. They are required to go through the courts to gain access to their birth certificate, a process that can not only be costly but also confusing. Now, two separate bills are being proposed in the Texas State Legislature that would allow easier access to adoptive birth records when an adoptee turns eighteen.
As the Texas Tribune reports, Senator Brandon Creight (R-Conroe) proposed SB 239, a measure that saw over three dozen supporters speak at its committee hearing. Supporters discussed the importance of having access to their medical records, as well as simply knowing more about one’s family. SB 239 would not provide an adopted child who is now an adult unfettered access to their biological parents, however. Written into the bill is a provision allowing a biological parent to indicate on the birth records whether they are okay with having their adult child contact them. Opponents of SB 239 argue that the bill opens up too big a can of worms, infringing on the privacy rights of biological parents.
The second adoption bill proposed in the Texas State Legislature is SB 1632. Sponsored by Senator Donna Campbell (R-New Braunfels), the measure does not make it easier for adoptees to access their records but instead informs adoptees and biological parents about the Central Adoption Registry and future contact opportunities.
Neither bill has moved out of committee yet.
If you need legal services or government affairs assistance, please contact The Posey Law Firm. Attorney Jake Posey and the team at The Posey Law Firm strive to assist clients in all avenues of state government.