Access to Adoption Records

Who May Access Information
Citation: Ann. Code § 39-259AIdentifying information may be made available to:

  • The adult adopted person
  • The birth parents
  • Adult birth siblings

Access to Nonidentifying Information
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506

A copy of all medical and genetic information compiled as part of the adoption investigation shall be made available to the adopting family by the department or other investigating children’s adoption agency prior to entry of the final order of adoption.

Mutual Access to Identifying Information
Citation: Ann. Code § 39-259A

The State Registrar of Vital Statistics shall establish and maintain a confidential list of qualified adult adopted persons, birth parents, or adult birth siblings who have consented to release of their identifying information. Any consent shall indicate the person’s desired method of notification in the event that a match occurs, and shall also indicate whether the applicant desires release of identifying information if a match occurs after his or her death. The applicant may revise his or her consent with respect to change of address or method of notification.A birth parent shall not be matched with an adult adopted person without the consent of the other birth parent unless:

  • There is only one birth parent listed on the birth certificate.
  • The other birth parent is deceased.
  • The other birth parent cannot be found by the Department of Health and Welfare or by a licensed child-placing agency.

Access to Original Birth Certificate
Citation: Ann. Code § 39-258

The original birth certificate is available upon a court order or, in accordance with § 39-259A, when all parties have consented through the State adoption registry.

Where the Information Can Be Located

Idaho Voluntary Adoption Registry, Vital Records Section, Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics

Collection of Family Information About Adopted Persons and Their Birth Families

Agency or Person Preparing the Report
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506
The Department of Health and Welfare or other children’s adoption agency may conduct the required studies.Contents of Report About the Adopted Person
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506
The report shall include the alleged date and place of birth and parentage of the child to be adopted, as well as the source of all such information.

Contents of Report About the Birth Family
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506
The investigative report shall include reasonably known or available medical and genetic information regarding both birth parents and sources of such information, as well as reasonably known or available providers of medical care and services to the birth parents. A copy of all medical and genetic information compiled in the investigation shall be made available to the adopting family.

When the Report Is Made
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506
The report shall be completed as soon as possible, not exceeding 30 days after service of the petition on the director.

Exceptions for Stepparent or Relative Adoptions
Citation: Ann. Code § 16-1506
In those instances where the prospective adoptive parent is married to the birth parent or is the grandparent of the child to be adopted, such social investigation shall be completed with regard to the prospective adoptive parent only upon order of the court.

Intestate Inheritance Rights for Adopted Children

Birth Parents in Relation to Adopted Person
Citation: Idaho Code §§ 16-1509; 15-2-109
Unless the decree of adoption otherwise provides, the birth parents of an adopted person are relieved of all parental duties and responsibilities toward the adopted person, including the right of inheritance unless specifically provided by will.For purposes of intestate succession, an adopted person is the child of an adopting parent and not the birth parents except that the adoption of a child by the spouse of a birth parent has no effect on the relationship between the child and that birth parent, and adoption by the spouse of a birth parent has no effect on the relationship between the child and a deceased, undivorced birth parent.Adoptive Parents in Relation to Adopted Person
Citation: Idaho Code § 16-1508
An adopted person and adopting parent shall sustain toward each other the legal relation of parent and child and shall have all the rights and duties of that relation, including the right to inherit.

Adopted Persons Who Are Not Included in a Will
Citation: Idaho Code §§ 15-2-302; 15-2-611
If a testator fails to provide in his or her will for any of his or her children adopted after the execution of his or her will, the omitted child receives a share in the estate equal in value to that which he or she would have received if the testator had died intestate unless:

  • It appears from the will that the omission was intentional.
  • When the will was executed, the testator had one or more children and gave substantially all his or her estate to the other parent of the omitted child.
  • The testator provided for the child by transfer outside the will with the intent that the transfer be in lieu of a testamentary provision.

Adopted persons are included in class gift terminology and terms of relationship in accordance with rules for determining relationships for purposes of intestate succession.

State Recognition of Intercountry Adoptions Finalized Abroad

Effect and Recognition of a Foreign Adoption Decree
Citation: Idaho Code § 16-1514(4)The decisions and orders of foreign courts and government agencies authorized to approve adoptions shall be accorded judicial comity or the same full faith and credit accorded a judgment of a sister State without additional proceedings or documentation, provided the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has allowed the child to enter the United States.

Readoption After an Intercountry Adoption
Citation: Idaho Code § 16-1514A

When an Idaho resident adopts a child in a foreign country in accordance with the laws of the foreign country, and such adoption is recognized as full and final by the U.S. Government, such resident may file with a petition a copy of the decree, order, or certificate of adoption that evidences finalization of the adoption in the foreign country, together with a certified translation thereof if it is not in English, and proof of full and final adoption from the U.S. Government with the clerk of the court of any county in this State having jurisdiction over the person or persons filing such documents.The court shall assign a docket number and file and enter the documents referenced above with an order recognizing the foreign adoption without the necessity of a hearing. Such order, along with the final decree, order, or certificate from the foreign country, shall have the same force and effect as if a final order of adoption were granted in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.

When such order is filed and entered, the adoptive parents may request a report of adoption as provided in § 39-259.

Application for a U.S. Birth Certificate
Citation: Idaho Code § 39-259(a)

The State Registrar will, upon request, issue a new birth certificate for a foreign-born child who was adopted in a State court when it receives:

  • A report that identifies the adoption order, contains evidence as to the true or probable date and place of birth and parentage of the adoptee, provides information necessary to establish a new birth certificate for an adoptee, and is certified by the clerk of the court
  • A request by the court decreeing the adoption, the adoptive parents, or the adoptee

The certificate will show:

  • The true or probable date and foreign country of birth as established by the court and shown on the court report of adoption
  • The child’s new name as stated in the report of adoption
  • Any other necessary facts as required by the State Registrar

The certificate is not evidence of U.S. citizenship for the child.

All records, files, and information of any court in this State relating to the adoption proceedings other than the new birth certificate will be sealed except as provided by court order or statute.

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