New York State: Update on OBC Application Processing

Things are moving in New York State!

Due to the Covid lockdown OBC processing has been delayed and very slow Here is an update, as of today, on the progress the Pre-Adoption Cert unit is making on sending out OBCs to New York adoptees who patiently–or not so patiently–have waited for their original birth certificates.  A substantial number–over 9.000– have been processed and/or sent.

If you”ve got your OBC and would like to post a picture of yourself with it on the Bastard Nation New York page, post it directly on our Facebook page or send it to me at [email protected] and I’ll get it up.

The information below is also posted on the BN New York webpage.




New York Adoptee Rights Coalition Update

NYARC has received the following update on the status of orders to the New York State Department of Health. This does NOT include orders made to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. We have repeatedly requested an update from New York City but to date have not received further information.

This afternoon, we had a conference call with representatives from the New York State Pre-Adoption Certificate unit, The New York State Adoption Information Registry, and Tim Monti-Wohlpart from the American Adoption Congress.

The following is verbatim from the memorandum the New York State Department of Health provided to us prior to the call:

Updated information on Pre-Adoption Certificate orders

The Pre-adoption Certificate Unit at the NYS Bureau of Vital records has been working diligently to catch up on the back log, we are still experiencing delays in order processing for Pre-Adoption Birth Certificates. Due to the research needed to locate and fulfill an order, our limited staff is still working to process the remaining orders. Depending on volume of inquiries received from the public, we are currently processing 150-200 orders per week. We have continued to process applications in the order in which they were received. We appreciate your patience as the Bureau of Vital Records works to fulfill the remaining requests for Pre-Adoption Birth Certificates.

Pre-Adoption Certificate order statistics as of

  • Total applications as of 11/13/2020
  • 10,648 Received
  • 9,327 Processed
  • 1,321 Remaining
  • The majority of VitalChek and mail-in applications from January through June have been completed. We are working on some requests from May and June and have already started to prepare request that came in during the month of August.

Updated information on the Adoption Information Registry

The Adoption Information Registry (AIR) continued most operations throughout the mandated closure. As the Pre-Adoption Certificate Unit encourages all applicants who have not previously registered with the AIR to return an application, there has been a significant increase to the volume of incoming applications to the AIR Unit. The AIR continues to work closely with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, all New York State Courts, and the Majority of New York State Adoption Agencies. Although the NYS AIR is working diligently to process the significant volume of new applications, we are still experiencing delays in processing due to other offices and localities remaining closed or working with reduced staff.

Adoption Information Registry statistics as of 11/18/20

  • Upon implementing the new legislation for Pre-Adoption Certificates on 1/15/20, the AIR has registered:
    • 785 Adoptees
    • 890 Birth Parents
    • 68 Biological Siblings
  • The AIR now has approximately 52,000 registrants
  • The AIR has completed approximately 54 matches between Adoptees, Birth Parents, and Siblings in 2020

Additional information provided on the call, but not found in the memorandum above, is as follows:

To date, there have been approximately 40 applications received for those born outside of but adopted within New York State. Of those, there are only 6 left to fulfill.

To date, a total of 408 direct line descendant applications have been received. Of those, there are only 52 left to fulfill.

All adoptees are encouraged to register with NYSAIR (aka “The Registry”). If you are already registered please be sure to update your contact information with any name or address changes. Birth parent registrations have increased exponentially since August. In August there were 83 birth parents registered; to date there are 890!!! The reasons for this vary but the increase is tremendous. The state would love to be able to match more people but can only do that if everyone registers and updates their information.

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