How to Obtain File Copies

If you were adopted through Holt International Children’s Services in the United States, Holt can provide copies of your child materials and other adoption-related documents. Adult adoptees may request copies of their child materials from their U.S. file, which is normally the same documents that were provided to your adoptive parents before you came home. The amount or type of documentation in your file depends upon the circumstances surrounding your relinquishment, and the amount of information available to Holt at that time.

This is the typical process for requesting file copies. Not every case is the same, and requesting file copies is completely optional:

What you do:

  • Complete the Request for Services online form and submit it.
  • Receive an email in 2-5 business days that confirms Holt facilitated your adoption and a link to the request for services form(s).
  • If your adoption was not facilitated by Holt, you’ll receive an email explaining this.
  • To request a copy of your U.S. child materials only:
    • Print, complete and return the Request for Post Adoption Services by mail only.
    • Include a check payable to Holt International in the amount of $25.
  • To request an assessment of your file to determine if a birth search is possible only:
    • Print, complete and return the Request for Post Adoption Services form by mail only.
    • There is no fee for this service.
  • To request a copy of your U.S. file and an assessment of the file:
    • Print, complete and return the Request for Post Adoption Services form by mail only.
    • Include a check payable to Holt International in the amount of $25.
  • In approximately 4-6 weeks you’ll receive an email with either your U.S. child material and/or an assessment of your file.

NOTE: All forms must be mailed; no faxed or scanned copies of the forms will be accepted. Mailing instructions are included on the Post Adoption Services Request form.

What Holt will do:

  • Confirm that Holt facilitated your adoption and that you are age 18 or over.
  • Email you the link to the request form(s) noted above or a response that Holt was not your placing agency.
  • Wait for your request form(s) and applicable fees to arrive by standard mail.
  • Retrieve your file from our off-site file storage, usually within 2-3 weeks of receipt of completed request forms.
  • Scan your U.S. child material (if requested) and forward it to you via email, usually within 3-4 weeks of file retrieval. Time frames may vary.
  • Provide an assessment of your file to determine if a search is possible (if requested).

Due to the very high volume of services we provide to adoptees, adoptive families, and birth families, response times can vary and may be longer than expected.  Files are not stored on-site and do take time to retrieve and review.  With limited staffing we are unable to update you when the request is received, or when the file arrives at our office.

Please scroll down to read more about file contents and the process in general.

What is in my U.S. file?

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Generally, your U.S. file will contain your Vietnam legal documents, child progress reports from when you were in care in Vietnam, and the photo that was taken when you were admitted to the Holt program. All of these documents are referred to as your “child material.” Not all files are the same: some have more information, and some have less; every file is as unique as adoptees themselves.

Birth Family Medical Records:

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There are many reasons why adult adoptees contact Holt to request a copy of their personal medical records for the time they were in Holt’s care, or to request medical records for their birth parents. For example, when an adoptee becomes a parent themselves, they would like to know of possible inherited conditions that could affect their children. No matter the reason, Holt will provide whatever information is available.

Unfortunately, there is rarely any medical history related to the adoptee’s birth family in our files. The circumstances surrounding how the adoptee came into care, the services available to the birth family at the relinquishment site, and the cultural beliefs and social practices in the country of origin affect the amount of information available. Recognition and management of health and illness in the adoptee’s birth country also impact reasons for the lack of information for most adoptees; for instance, the differences in Eastern medical practices versus Western medicine.

How to Request Your Copies:

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File copies must be requested in writing, with your original signature, along with the $25 copy fee.  If this fee poses a financial hardship, please notify the Post Adoption Services department. While we appreciate your support for our services, we don’t want the fees to be an obstacle, and will be happy to reduce or waive fees when needed. We require these requests in writing with your original signature to help ensure that you, the adoptee, are the person actually requesting our services. This is as much for your protection as ours.

To request a copy or assessment of your file, we must first confirm that Holt International facilitated your adoption. Once this has been verified, you’ll receive an email and further instructions enabling you to request your file copies. File copies are scanned in color (in most cases) and forwarded via email unless instructed otherwise.