By: Susan Price, Associate Attorney
You asked (1) whether an unwed mother must get her child ' s biological father ' s permission to exclude his name from the birth certificate and (2) how an adult can remove the name of his adoptive father from his birth certificate. Reportedly, your constituent ' s mother knew the identity of his biological father but did not report it for inclusion on his Massachusetts birth certificate. He was adopted in Connecticut as a young child and in the process the probate court ordered that his birth certificate be amended to add his adoptive father ' s name.
The Office of Legislative Research cannot give legal opinions and this report should not be considered one.
An unwed mother is not required to list the putative father ' s name on the birth certificate under current Massachusetts or
Connecticut law or under those states ' laws in effect in 1979, the year of your constituent ' s birth.
According to Linda Dow, chief counsel to Connecticut ' s Probate Court Administrator, an adult in your constituent ' s position can have an adoptive parent ' s name removed from his birth certificate only if he is adopted by another adult. In that situation, he and his biological mother would receive official notice of his request and a probate court hearing. The adoptive father would not be notified of the proceeding. This procedure is available to anyone adopted in Connecticut, regardless of their place of birth.
The registrar of vital statistics in the Massachusetts town where your constituent ' s birth was recorded must amend the birth certificate after receiving a certified copy of the new Connecticut adoption certificate (MGLA 46 § 13).