3. Support for adopted adults
Adults aged 18 and over can apply for access to information about their birth origins.
We offer support to adopted adults who:
- were adopted through us
- live in Buckinghamshire
- have applied for their original birth certificate and have chosen Buckinghamshire as the place to have their counselling, and have informed the General Register Office of this
Adopted before 12th November 1975?
By law, you need to speak to a local authority social worker, or a counsellor from an approved adoption society before you can apply for your original birth certificate.
At the counselling session you will be given advice on how to proceed and how to prepare yourselves. You can apply to the General Register Office or Nidirect government services for a copy of your original birth certificate. All the information along with relevant forms can be found on the Directgov website.
Adopted on or after 12th November 1975?
You are not required by law to have counselling before you can continue with your birth certificate application, although you may find it helpful.
However, you are entitled to ask for counselling and support. It can assist in looking at aspects of the information that may cause distress or conflict and could help you make an informed decision on the journey you are about to take.
If you decide you want access to information from your adoption file, you can apply to the adoption agency that arranged your adoption and your worker can arrange for it to be sent to us.
If you do not know the adoption agency, your counsellor can try and find out where it is and apply for the file on your behalf.
If your adoption was arranged by us, your file will be ordered from Buckinghamshire’s Adoption Archive.
Sometimes no file is available. It may be possible that the court involved at the time are happy to share the court file.
Once an adoption file has been received, your worker will prepare a copy to share with you.
A support line for adults is available on Thursdays between 9am and 1pm.
Adoptive parents of adults seeking birth information
Often adoptive parents wish to support their adult children in finding out information about their birth origins. The website Adoption Search Reunion has a section with information for adoptive parents.
On occasions adopted adults do not wish to cause distress to adoptive parents and do not feel able to share the fact that they are seeking birth origin information. Research indicates that for the majority of adopted adults who do seek birth origin information, such information does not harm the relationship with their adoptive parents.
We are happy to discuss any concerns that you may have, to share with you any changes in the legislation since you adopted and to signpost you on to other agencies if appropriate.
Last updated: 5 March 2020