Virginia Delegate Wendell Walker (R-Lynchburg) has again filed a bill in the House of Delegates that, if enacted, would restore a right that all Virginia-born adopted people once had: a right to request and obtain your own original birth certificate.
Here’s what we know so far.
Prefiling of HB550
The bill is constituent-driven in response to a news story that appeared in November 2022. The bill is simple and direct, particularly within the complex legal framework that controls the release of original birth certificates for Virginia-born adopted people. The text of the bill is here. With minor revisions, it is identical to the bill previously active in 2023, which did not come up for a full House vote during the session. The core provision states that:
at the written request and upon proof of identification, the State Health Commissioner shall provide an adult adopted person access to his original birth certificate and make such certificate available for copy.HB550, as of January 9, 2024
The bill author (known as a “chief patron” under Virginia legislative practice) is Republican Representative Wendell Walker of Lynchburg. He prefiled the bill on January 9, 2024, and it will likely be assigned to the Health and Human Services Committee (the new name for the committee previously known as Health, Welfare, and Institutions). Important Note: Democrats are now in the majority in the Virginia House of Delegates, so committee chairs are Democrats. In the last session, committee chairs were Republicans.
The current session is scheduled to adjourn by March 10, 2024.
What Can I Do Right Now?
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