How to Obtain File Copies

How to Obtain File Copies

IMG_1325If you adopted your child through Holt International Children’s Services in the United States, Holt can provide you with copies of his or her child materials and other adoption-related documents. These should be the same documents you received when your child came home. Documents can be lost over time, and Holt is happy to help you replace these valuable pieces of history.

In cases where the adoptee is now age 18 or over, we are unable to provide child material copies to adoptive parents.  Please have your adult child contact us directly.

You can also request copies of your home study and final post-placement report if they were completed by a Holt International social worker.

Unfortunately, in most birth countries it isn’t possible to receive new original legal documents, but we are happy to provide you with photocopies from our files when possible.

 

 

Step-by-Step:

This is the typical process for requesting file copies.

What you do:

  • Complete the Online Verification Form.
  • Receive an email in 2-5 business days that confirms Holt facilitated your child’s adoption and a link to the request for services form(s).
  • If Holt did not facilitate your child’s adoption, you’ll receive an email explaining this, and a list of possible U.S. agencies that may have been your placing agency (see Our History below).
  • To request a copy of your child’s U.S. child materials only:
    • Print, complete and return the Request for Post Adoption Services – File Copies by mail only.
    • Include a check payable to Holt International for $25.
    • Only one parent’s signature is required.
  • To request a copy of your home study and final post-placement report only:
    • Print, complete and return the Request for Post Adoption Services – Home Study form by mail only.
    • Include a check payable to Holt International for $25.
    • Both parents must sign the form, even if they are no longer married. If one parent is deceased, please include a copy of his or her death certificate.
  • To request a copy of both the U.S. child materials and home study/post-placement reports:
    • If they are living, both parents must sign the form, regardless of whether or not they are still married. If one parent is deceased, please include a copy of his or her death certificate.
    • Include a check payable to Holt International for $50.
    • Print, complete, and return the Request for Post Adoption Services forms by mail only.
    • In approximately 4-6 weeks, you’ll receive an email with the documents you requested.  Time frames may vary so your patience is appreciated.

NOTE:  All forms must be mailed; we will not accept faxed or scanned copies of the documents. Mailing instructions are included on the Post Adoption Services Request form.

What Holt will do:

  • Confirm that Holt facilitated your child’s adoption and that your child is still a minor.
  • Email you the link to the request form(s) noted above or information about Holt Korea’s other partner agencies (see Our History below).
  • Wait for your request form and applicable fee 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 child’s U.S. child material and/or your home study and final post-placement reports, and forward it to you via email – usually within 3-4 weeks of file retrieval. Time frames may vary.

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 myDebra and Robert Neilson-1 child’s file?

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Generally, the U.S. file will contain your child’s Korean legal documents, child progress reports while they were in care in Korea, and their intake photo taken when they were admitted to the Holt program. All of these documents are referred to as their “child material.” Not all files are the same — some have more information and some have less. Every file is as unique as adoptees are themselves.

Our History

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In 1976, Korean law mandated that all adoption agencies be Korean-owned and operated. At that time, Holt became two separate agencies – Holt International (Holt) and Holt Children’s Services of Korea (Holt Korea). Holt Korea works with Holt International, as well as six other U.S. agencies and several European countries. At the time of the separation, the official Holt headquarters was in the U.S. and the majority of files were shipped to the U.S. office for storage. Since 1976, both agencies have retained copies of child materials, but do occasionally have different documents. Adoptive parents may only request copies of the U.S. file.

If your child was adopted after 1976, your U.S. agency may or may not have been Holt International. Holt Korea’s U.S. partner agencies may include WACAP, Wide Horizons, Bethany Christian and others.

European Adoptees

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Holt Children’s Services of Korea (Holt Korea) partnered with several European agencies to place children in homes in France, Belgium, Norway and other countries. All records for European adoptees are maintained by Holt Korea and the European agency.  Holt International is only licensed to place children into homes in the U.S., and consequently we can not access any European adoptees’ records. If you are unable to locate your European agency, please email us at pas@holtinternational.org for assistance.

How to Request Your Copies

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File copies must be requested in writing with your original signature along with a $25/$50 copy fee. If this fee creates a financial hardship, please notify the Post Adoption Services department. While we appreciate your support for our services, we don’t want fees to come between you and your legal records, and we are happy to reduce or waive fees when needed. We require all requests come to us in writing with your notarized signature as a means to help ensure that you, the adoptive parent, are the person actually requesting our services. This is as much for your protection as ours.

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