Adoption Records Release Notification
Receiving Advance Notification when Adoption Records are to be Released
Adoption records are confidential and not open to the general public, but they are available to certain individuals, which are detailed below.
Tennessee offers the Advance Notice Registry to allow eligible individuals to receive a 15-day notice before adoption records containing their identifying information are released to anyone eligible to request them.
For example, a woman who placed a child for adoption can receive advanced notice that the now-adult child, or another eligible person, has requested a release of the records containing her identifying information.
If you were adopted, you don’t need to register.
The adopted person does not have to register or file with the Advance Notice Registry because he or she will automatically be notified if anyone tries to access their records. Additionally, adoptees must always give written consent or denial before any of their sealed records are released.
Who is eligible to file with the Advance Notice Registry?
- The adopted person, 21 years of age or older.
- The adopted person's birth, adoptive, step- or legal parent, age 21 or older.
- The adopted person's birth or adoptive siblings, 21 years of age or older.
- The adopted person's lineal ancestors, 21 years of age or older.
- The adopted person's lineal descendants, 21 years of age or older.
- The legal representatives of any of these persons.
Persons ineligible to access adoption records and receive Advance Notification include:
- A parent or pre-adoptive guardian whose rights were involuntarily terminated for cause.
- A sibling, lineal ancestor, spouse or legal representative of the person whose rights were involuntarily terminated for cause.
- A person guilty of a crime of violence or neglect against the adopted person.
How will you be notified?
You only will be notified if you meet the eligibility requirements and the records contain identifying information about you. Notification of the impending release of records will be sent by certified mail with return receipt requested, to the most recent address filed with the Advance Notice Registry.
There is a $25 fee to register. Payable when form is submitted.
You must send a completed, signed Advanced Notice Registry form, along with a copy of your ID and payment. Please mail the following items to the address below to register:
Completed and signed Advance Notice Registry Form. You can download this form here. If you wish for us to mail you a form to complete, please contact us and we will be happy to mail you a form to complete.
Verification copy of your identity. Acceptable proof examples: picture ID, driver’s license, passport, full birth certificate, or marriage certificate.
Your fee payment of $25.00 can be made the form of a cashier’s check, money order, or personal check made payable to Department of Children’s Services.
Tennessee Department of Children’s Services
Post Adoption Services
315 Deaderick Street, 9th Floor
Nashville, Tennessee 37243
Post Adoption Services Information Line: (615) 532-5637