SENATE BILL 5976
State of Washington 57th Legislature 2001 Regular Session
By Senators Prentice and Kohl‑Welles
Read first time 02/12/2001. Referred to Committee on Health & Long‑Term Care.
AN ACT Relating to maintaining grandparents' information with birth records; amending RCW 70.58.080; adding a new section to chapter 70.58 RCW; and creating a new section.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. (1)(a) As the legislature has previously declared in RCW 13.34.130 and elsewhere, children needing out-of-home placement should be placed with a suitable relative when one is available. The process of locating relatives can be complicated by lack of information, including full legal names, dates, and places of birth, and former addresses.
(b) The legislature recognizes that adult adoptees adopted after October 1993 have a right to their original birth certificate upon turning eighteen years of age, if no affidavit of nondisclosure has been filed, according to RCW 26.33.345. An adult adoptee who is interested in locating birth parents and other relatives may be able to use the information on his or her birth certificate to aid in the search.
(c) The legislature finds that foster children who have turned eighteen lose most of their state support. These foster children are in need of adult support, and may be interested in contacting family members, but may not know how to locate them. The legislature finds that former foster children often have family willing to provide support, but the former foster child may have difficulty locating them if legal names are not known.
(2) It is the intent of the legislature:
(a) To make it easier for child welfare services to locate relatives for out-of-home placement by expanding the information available from birth records to include grandparents' information;
(b) To make it easier for adult adoptees and children who have aged out of foster care to locate relatives by providing access to known grandparents' information as well as parents' information;
(c) That grandparents' information be solicited and provided on a voluntary basis during the data collection for birth certificates.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. A new section is added to chapter 70.58 RCW to read as follows:
(1) The department shall, by rule, develop a procedure for storing voluntary grandparents' information with the birth certificate, whether on the certificate itself in a new section, or only in data base form. The requested information shall include:
(a) The full legal names of the grandparents;
(b) The date and place of birth of the grandparents; and
(c) The current address of the grandparents.
(2) The department's procedure shall require the attending physician, midwife, or his or her agent to request grandparents' information from the parent or parents of a newborn. When requesting information for birth certificates, the attending physician, midwife, or his or her agent shall inform the parent or parents that providing grandparents' information is voluntary and that if it is provided it will be stored with the birth certificate and could be used as contact information in out-of-home placement proceedings or by adult adoptees or former foster children.
(3) The department shall develop informational and educational materials for hospitals, midwives, and the department of social and health services and local registrars to inform health care and social workers of requirements and information resources provided under this section.
(4) Nothing in this section may be construed to affect existing legal rights of any person, whether a child, parent, or grandparent.
(5) For the purposes of this section, "grandparent" means the person or persons listed on the birth certificate of the parent or parents of the child whose grandparents' information is being requested.
Sec. 3. RCW 70.58.080 and 1997 c 58 s 937 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) Within ten days after the birth of any child, the attending physician, midwife, or his or her agent shall:
(a) Fill out a certificate of birth, giving all of the particulars required, including: (i) The mother's name and date of birth, and (ii) if the mother and father are married at the time of birth or the father has signed an acknowledgment of paternity, the father's name and date of birth; and
(b) File the certificate of birth together with the mother's and father's social security numbers, and any voluntarily provided grandparents' information, with the state registrar of vital statistics.
(2) The local registrar
shall forward the birth certificate, any signed affidavit acknowledging
and)) the mother's and father's social security numbers,
and any voluntarily provided grandparents' information, to the state office
of vital statistics pursuant to RCW 70.58.030.
(3) The state registrar of vital statistics shall make available to the division of child support the birth certificates, the mother's and father's social security numbers and paternity affidavits.
(4) Upon the birth of a child to an unmarried woman, the attending physician, midwife, or his or her agent shall:
(a) Provide an opportunity for the child's mother and natural father to complete an affidavit acknowledging paternity. The completed affidavit shall be filed with the state registrar of vital statistics. The affidavit shall contain or have attached:
(i) A sworn statement by the mother consenting to the assertion of paternity and stating that this is the only possible father;
(ii) A statement by the father that he is the natural father of the child;
(iii) A sworn statement signed by the mother and the putative father that each has been given notice, both orally and in writing, of the alternatives to, the legal consequences of, and the rights, including, if one parent is a minor, any rights afforded due to minority status, and responsibilities that arise from, signing the affidavit acknowledging paternity;
(iv) Written information, furnished by the department of social and health services, explaining the implications of signing, including parental rights and responsibilities; and
(v) The social security numbers of both parents.
(b) Provide written information and oral information, furnished by the department of social and health services, to the mother and the father regarding the benefits of having the child's paternity established and of the availability of paternity establishment services, including a request for support enforcement services. The oral and written information shall also include information regarding the alternatives to, the legal consequences of, and the rights, including, if one parent is a minor any rights afforded due to minority status, and responsibilities that arise from, signing the affidavit acknowledging paternity.
(5) The physician or midwife or his or her agent is entitled to reimbursement for reasonable costs, which the department shall establish by rule, when an affidavit acknowledging paternity is filed with the state registrar of vital statistics.
(6) If there is no attending physician or midwife, the father or mother of the child, householder or owner of the premises, manager or superintendent of the public or private institution in which the birth occurred, shall notify the local registrar, within ten days after the birth, of the fact of the birth, and the local registrar shall secure the necessary information and signature to make a proper certificate of birth.
(7) When an infant is found for whom no certificate of birth is known to be on file, a birth certificate shall be filed within the time and in the form prescribed by the state board of health.
(8) When no putative father is named on a birth certificate of a child born to an unwed mother the mother may give any surname she so desires to her child but shall designate in space provided for father's name on the birth certificate "None Named".
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