Post Adoption Services

Post-Adoption Services was established in 1993, and follows the provincial Adoption Act legislation. In order for Post-Adoption Service to be provided, an adoption must have been legally finalized in Prince Edward Island and the adopted person must be at least 18 years old.

Even though an adoption may have been arranged by a family agency or privately, all requests for disclosure services must begin with an application to Post-Adoption Services.

Post Adoption Services available to:

Adopted Persons

  • Health history
  • Non-identifying background information
  • Registration on the Post-Adoption registry
  • Active search for birth parent or birth sibling(s)
  • Identifying Information as prescribed on birth registration (after January 31, 2021).

Birth Parents

  • Non-identifying background information
  • Registration on the Post-Adoption registry
  • Active search for adult adoptee
  • Identifying Information from the Adoption Order with adoptive parents names removed (once the adopted person is 19 years or older). Available after January 31, 2021.

Adoptive Parents

  • Non-identifying background information about adopted child including any health history which may be contained in the adoption records.
  • Registration on the Post-Adoption registry

Birth Family

  • Registration on the Post-Adoption registry

Child of an adult adoptee (if the adult adoptee is deceased)

  • Registration on the Post-Adoption registry
  • Identifying information as prescribed on the birth registration

Open Adoption Records

The Prince Edward Island Adoption Act was amended and all adoption records will be open as of January 31, 2021. This means that adult adoptees, 18 years of age or older, will have the ability to access specific identifying information contained on their original birth registration, including their birth name and the identity of his/her birth parent(s).

Once an adopted person reaches the age of 19, birth parents are able to access a copy of the Adoption Order (with adoptive parents names removed) which will contain the name given to the adoptee at the time of adoption.

Disclosure Veto

For adoptions that were finalized prior to January 31, 2020, adult adoptees and birth parents have the opportunity to opt out of having their information shared through a “disclosure veto.” A disclosure veto is a document filed with Post-Adoption Services to prevent the release of any information identifying the person who has filed the veto.  In the event that a veto is filed, the individual is encouraged to include any current or relevant non-identifying health or background information that could be of interest to the other party.

Disclosure Vetoes will not be accepted for any adoptions finalized after January 31, 2020.

Contact Preference

A Contact Preference permits an individual to state how they would like to be contacted, or if they would prefer not to be contacted at all. Contact Preferences will be available to adult adoptees and birth parents as follows:

  • No Contact preference allows for the release of identifying information, but tells the other party that you do not wish to be contacted. The person receiving the information must agree to the terms of the contact preference, by signing a legal document, before receiving the identifying information requested.
  • Contact preference allows for the release of identifying information and provides an individual with the ability to tell the other party how they wish to be contacted (e.g., by email, telephone or a third party). The person receiving the information must agree to the terms of the contact preference, by signing a legal document, before receiving the identifying information requested.

Non-Identifying Background Information

Adult adoptees and adoptive parents may contact Post-Adoption Services for non-identifying background information about the birth family. If available, information would include details of the adoptee’s history, including:

  • adoptee’s birth history and early development
  • physical descriptions of the birth parents
  • health information    
  • religion
  • occupation
  • education
  • particular interests
  • circumstances regarding the plan of adoption

The information does not include identifying information such as names and addresses of birth family members.

Birth parents can receive confirmation of an adoption and the jurisdiction in which the child’s adoption took place. Information on a child’s birth history and early development, as well as progress at the time of adoption may also be provided if available.

Identifying Information

(available After January 31, 2021)

Adult adoptees, birth parents, children of deceased adopted persons and children of deceased birth parents may contact Post-Adoption Services for identifying information including:

  • adult adoptees or a child of a deceased adopted person may receive prescribed identifying information from the original birth registration and/or a copy of the Adoption Order;
  • birth parents or a child of a deceased birth parent may receive a copy of the Adoption Order which will include the adoptive name of the child (names of adoptive parents will be removed).

If a Disclosure Veto has been filed, identifying information pertaining to the individual who filed the Disclosure Veto will not be disclosed to the other party.

If a Contact Preference has been filed, identifying information pertaining to the individual who filed the Contact Preference will only be disclosed to the other party once a legal document called an Undertaking has been signed stating compliance with the terms of the Contact Preference.

Post-Adoption Register

The Post-Adoption Register is a system whereby persons affected by an adoption may register their willingness to exchange updated information and/or to have potential contact with each other. If a match is identified, the possibility of a reunion will be explored. A reunion will not occur without the mutual consent of both parties.

Those who may ask to have their name placed on the register include:

  • adoptees (over 18 years of age)
  • birth parents (birth mothers and birth fathers)
  • persons affected by the adoption (directly or indirectly)
  • adoptive parents (in certain circumstances)

Active Search

Adult adoptees may request a search for a birth mother, birth father or birth sibling by Post-Adoption Services. Searches will be undertaken for birth fathers only if paternity was acknowledged or confirmed by the birth mother.

Birth parents may request that a search be conducted for their adopted child by Post-Adoption Services.

If the person being sought is located and agrees to a reunion, it will be arranged.

If the person being sought is deceased, identifying information will be provided. If a Disclosure Veto has been placed on the file by the person being sought, the applicant will be asked to wait until one year after death before being eligible to receive identifying information. Contact may be made with extended family members at the request of the adoptee.

A special search may be requested by adoptive parents or adult adoptees to acquire medical information for the diagnosis or treatment of a serious medical condition.

Other important information to consider:

  • Adult adoptees are encouraged to inform and involve their adoptive parents.
  • Birth families are encouraged to provide updated health information, pictures, and letters which may be of benefit to an adoptee in later years.
  • Adoptive parents, adoptees and birth parents may wish to place current information and pictures in the adoption record which could be provided to birth parents if contact is made by them at a future date.
  • Support for adult adoptees, birth parents, adoptive parents, and other birth family members is available upon request.

Contact:

Post Adoption Services
161 St. Peters Road
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8  Canada
Phone: 902-368-6511

Email: adoption@gov.pe.ca

Published date: 
January 31, 2020
Social Development and Housing

General Inquiries

Department of Social Development and Housing
2nd Floor, Jones Building
11 Kent Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE C1A 7N8

Phone: 902-620-3777
Toll-free: 1-866-594-3777
Fax: 902-368-4740

DeptSDH@gov.pe.ca