How can I find an adopted child?

How do I go about finding a child who was adopted?

Best Answer

  • edited April 7 Answer ✓
    Being able to find a child who was adopted with be largely dependent on the privacy measures that were taken in securing adoption records and securing the identity of the child whom was adopted. In many closed adoptions, adoptive families may never disclose their identity, locality, and very often change the name of the child who was adopted.  Unless laws are passed that allow for opening of closed adoption records, it is typically illegal for adoption agencies to disclose any personal information about an adopted child. With this, it can very often be difficult to gather information that would be needed to find an adopted child. However, this does not mean finding an adopted child is impossible. 

    If your quest is to find an adopted child who is still a minor, you may have much more difficulty or find it impossible. In this case, odds will be in your favor if the adoption was not completely closed. With this, you may be able to reach out to the agency you used to see if they would be able to get in contact with the adoptive family. If the adoption is closed, it is also best to reach out through the agency to see if they would be willing to reach out to the adoptive family on your behalf. 

    If the child who was adopted is over the age of 18, there are a few more options available to you. You can certainly hire a private investigator to try to put the pieces together and search for the child based on the information you have on hand and any information your agency is willing to release. You can also use the adoption registries at to see if your child is searching for you or to leave a profile in case they are looking one day in the future. Another option is to use DNA services such as to see if your child may also be searching for you.  Here is an article about one such story and some tips on finding family members. Another great thing about Ancestry is that it will connect you with anyone who has any DNA match to you. This helps in cases of elderly birth parents searching for their children as their grandchildren may also be in the system. 

    Regardless of the age of the child who was adopted, one of the best avenues you will have in your search for them will be your adoption agency. Adoption agencies not only provide services to adoptive parents, but to birth parents as well. A good agency typically and understands and is helpful in being available well past adoption finalization. Here are some of the services an agency provides. Best of luck in your search. 
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