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Appendix Part 2

PART III. ADOPTION LAW CHANGES

SECTION 3. G.S. 48‑2‑100(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c) The courts of this State shall not exercise jurisdiction under this Chapter if at the time the petition for adoption is filed, a court of any other state is exercising jurisdiction substantially in conformity with the Uniform Child‑Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, Article 2 of Chapter 50A of the General Statutes. However, this subsection shall not apply and the courts of this State may exercise jurisdiction under this Chapter if either of the following apply:

(1)The matter in which the other state is exercising jurisdiction places custody of the adoptee in an agency, the petitioner, or another custodian expressly in support of an adoption plan that does not identify a specific prospective adoptive parent other than the petitioner.

(2)Prior to the decree of adoption being granted, the court of the other state dismisses its proceeding or releases its exclusive, continuing jurisdiction."

SECTION 4.(a) G.S. 48‑2‑205 reads as rewritten:

"§ 48‑2‑205. Recognition of adoption decrees from other jurisdictions.

A final adoption decree issued by any other state must be recognized in this State. Where a minor child has been previously adopted in a foreign country by a petitioner or petitioners seeking to readopt the child under the laws of North Carolina, the adoption order entered in the foreign country may be accepted in lieu of the consent of the biological parent or parents or the guardian of the child to the readoption. A man and a woman who adopted a minor child in a foreign country while married to one another must readopt jointly, regardless of whether they have since divorced. If either does not join in the petition, he or she must be joined as a necessary party as provided in G.S. 1A‑1, Rule 19. If a man and a woman have adopted a minor child in a foreign country while married to one another and one of them has died, then the survivor may petition for readoption, and the court shall issue any decree of adoption in the names of both of the man and the woman who adopted the minor child in a foreign country."

SECTION 4.(b) G.S. 48‑2‑301(c) reads as rewritten:

"(c) If the individual who files the petition pursuant to Article 3 of this Chapter is unmarried, no other individual may join in the petition, except that a man and a woman who jointly adopted a minor child in a foreign country while married to one another must readopt jointly as provided in G.S. 48‑2‑205, and the survivor of the man and the woman who jointly adopted a minor child in a foreign country while married to one another may file to adopt in the names of both, as provided in G.S. 48‑2‑205."

SECTION 5. G.S. 48‑2‑606(b) reads as rewritten:

"(b) In stating the date and place of birth of an adoptee born outside the United States, the court shall do each of the following:

(1) Enter the date of birth as stated in the certificate of birth from the country of origin, the United States Department of State's report of birth abroad, or the documents of the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service or a date of birth based upon medical evidence by affidavit or testimony as to the probable chronological age of the adoptee and other evidence the court finds appropriate to consider.

(2) Enter the place of birth as stated in the certificate of birth from the country of origin, the United States Department of State's report of birth abroad, or the documents of the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service or, if the exact place of birth is unknown, enter the information that is known, including the country of origin.

"

SECTION 6. G.S. 48‑3‑303(c)(12) reads as rewritten:

"(c) The preplacement assessment shall, after a reasonable investigation, report on the following about the individual being assessed:

(12) The agency preparing the preplacement assessment may redact from the preplacement assessment provided to a placing parent or guardian detailed information reflecting the prospective adoptive parent's income, expenditures, assets, liabilities, and social security numbers, and detailed information about the prospective adoptive parent's extended family members, including surnames, names of employers, names of schools attended, social security numbers, telephone numbers and addresses, and other similarly detailed information about extended family members obtained under subsections (b) and (c) of this section."

SECTION 7.(a) G.S. 48‑3‑605(c) is amended by adding a new subdivision to read:

"(c) An individual before whom a consent is signed and acknowledged under subsection (a) of this section shall certify in writing that to the best of the individual's knowledge or belief, the parent, guardian, or minor to be adopted executing the consent has met each of the following:

(5)Been advised of the right to seek the advice of legal counsel before executing the consent."

SECTION 7.(b) G.S. 48‑3‑606(14)c. reads as rewritten:

"§ 48‑3‑606. Content of consent; mandatory provisions.

A consent required from a minor to be adopted, a parent, or a guardian under G.S. 48‑3‑601 must be in writing and state each of the following:

(14) That the person executing the consent has:

  • Been advised of the right to seek the advice of legal counsel."
  • SECTION 7.(c) G.S. 48‑3‑702(b1) is amended by adding a new subdivision to read:

    "(b1) An individual before whom a relinquishment is signed and acknowledged under subsection (a) of this section shall certify in writing that to the best of the individual's knowledge or belief, the parent, guardian, or minor to be adopted executing the relinquishment has met each of the following:

    (5)Been advised of the right to seek the advice of legal counsel before executing the relinquishment."

    SECTION 7.(d) G.S. 48‑3‑703(a)(12)c. reads as rewritten:

    "(a) A relinquishment executed by a parent or guardian under G.S. 48‑3‑701 must be in writing and state the following:

    (12) That the individual executing the relinquishment has:

  • Been advised of the right to seek the advice of legal counsel."
  • SECTION 8. G.S. 48‑9‑102 reads as rewritten:

    "§ 48‑9‑102. Records confidential and sealed.

    (d1)The Division, within 40 days after receipt of the record in subsection (d), shall conduct a limited review for the sole purpose of identifying any obvious error on the report to vital records that is prepared by the superior court clerk and to notify the clerk of the error. If the Division notifies the superior court clerk of an error in the report to vital records, then the clerk shall correct the report and return it to the Division within 10 days after receipt of the notice.

    (e) The Division shall, subject to the review in (d1), cause the papers and reports related to the proceeding to be permanently indexed and filed.

    (f) The Division shall, within 40 days after receiving it from the court, transmit a report of each adoption and any name change to the State Registrar if the adoptee was born in this State. In the case of an adoptee who was not born in this State, the Division shall, within 40 days after receiving it from the court, transmit the report and any name change to the appropriate official responsible for issuing birth certificates or their equivalent.

    …."

    SECTION 9. G.S. 48‑9‑109(1) is amended by adding a new sub‑subdivision to read:

    "§ 48‑9‑109. Certain disclosures authorized.

    Nothing in this Article shall be interpreted or construed to prevent:

    (1) An employee of a court, agency, or any other person from:

    d.Giving a file‑stamped copy of a document to a person, or to the legal representative of a person, who has filed the document in an adoption proceeding."

    SECTION 10. G.S. 1‑597 reads as rewritten:

    "§ 1‑597. Regulations for newspaper publication of legal notices, advertisements, etc.

    (a) Whenever a notice or any other paper, document or legal advertisement of any kind or description shall be authorized or required by any of the laws of the State of North Carolina, heretofore or hereafter enacted, or by any order or judgment of any court of this State to be published or advertised in a newspaper, such publication, advertisement or notice shall be of no force and effect unless it shall be published in a newspaper with a general circulation to actual paid subscribers which newspaper at the time of such publication, advertisement or notice, shall have been admitted to the United States mails in the Periodicals class in the county or political subdivision where such publication, advertisement or notice is required to be published, and which shall have been regularly and continuously issued in the county in which the publication, advertisement or notice is authorized or required to be published, at least one day in each calendar week for at least 25 of the 26 consecutive weeks immediately preceding the date of the first publication of such advertisement, publication or notice; provided that in the event that a newspaper otherwise meeting the qualifications and having the characteristics prescribed by G.S. 1‑597 to 1‑599, should fail for a period not exceeding four weeks in any calendar year to publish one or more of its issues such newspaper shall nevertheless be deemed to have complied with the requirements of regularity and continuity of publication prescribed herein. Provided further, that where any city or town is located in two or more adjoining counties, any newspaper published in such city or town shall, for the purposes of G.S. 1‑597 to 1‑599, be deemed to be admitted to the mails, issued and published in all such counties in which such town or city of publication is located, and every publication, advertisement or notice required to be published in any such city or town or in any of the counties where such city or town is located shall be valid if published in a newspaper published, issued and admitted to the mails anywhere within any such city or town, regardless of whether the newspaper's plant or the post office where the newspaper is admitted to the mails is in such county or not, if the newspaper otherwise meets the qualifications and requirements of G.S. 1‑597 to 1‑599. This provision shall be retroactive to May 1, 1940, and all publications, advertisements and notices published in accordance with this provision since May 1, 1940, are hereby validated.

    (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of G.S. 1‑599, whenever a notice or any other paper, document or legal advertisement of any kind or description shall be authorized or required by any of the laws of the State of North Carolina, heretofore or hereafter enacted, or by any order or judgment of any court of this State to be published or advertised in a newspaper qualified for legal advertising in a county and there is no newspaper qualified for legal advertising as defined in this section in such county, then it shall be deemed sufficient compliance with such laws, order or judgment by publication of such notice or any other such paper, document or legal advertisement of any kind or description in a newspaper published in an adjoining county or in a county within the same district court district as defined in G.S. 7A‑133 or superior court district or set of districts as defined in G.S. 7A‑41.1, as the case may be; provided, if the clerk of the superior court finds as a fact that such newspaper otherwise meets the requirements of this section and has a general circulation in such county where no newspaper is published meeting the requirements of this section.

    (c)Whenever a notice or any other paper, document, or legal advertisement of any kind or description is required to be published in a jurisdiction outside of North Carolina where legal notices are customarily published in specialized legal publications, any form of publication which meets the requirements for legal notices under the law of the locality where it is published shall be deemed sufficient under this section."

    SECTION 11. Article 38 of Chapter 7B of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:

    "§ 7B‑3807. Adoption of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children regulations.

    The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children regulations and any subsequent amendments that are adopted by the Association of Administrators of the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children of the American Public Human Service Association are hereby enacted into law and shall apply to all interstate placements of children between North Carolina and jurisdictions that are a party to this Compact."

    SECTION 12. Article 38 of Chapter 7B of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:

    "§ 7B‑3808. Action for Interstate Compact administrator to forward a request.

    The Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children office at the Department of Health and Human Services has the authority to request supporting or additional information necessary to carry out the purpose and policy of the compact and to require assurance that the placement meets all applicable North Carolina placement statutes. Any sending agency that intends to place a child into and out of North Carolina shall submit a complete request to the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children office at the Department of Health and Human Services. To be considered a complete request, the submission must comply with the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children regulations and include any supporting additional information that the Department of Health and Human Services or the receiving state deems necessary. Unless otherwise provided by the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children regulations, when the Department of Health and Human Services receives an incomplete request, the Department of Health and Human Services shall provide either the sending agency in North Carolina or the receiving state with written notice of the specific information needed to process the request and shall allow the sending agency 10 business days from the date of the notice to submit the requested information. If after the expiration of the 10 business days the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children office at the Department of Health and Human Services does not receive the requested information or the sending agency does not withdraw its request, the request shall be deemed expired."

    PART IV. EFFECTIVE DATE

    SECTION 13. Part II and Part III of this act become effective October 1, 2019. Part I of this act becomes effective October 1, 2019, and applies to distributions on or after that date. Except as otherwise provided, the act is effective when it becomes law.

    In the General Assembly read three times and ratified this the 15th day of July, 2019.

    s/ Daniel J. Forest

    President of the Senate

    s/ Tim Moore

    Speaker of the House of Representatives

    s/ Roy Cooper

    Governor

    Approved 12:09 p.m. this 26th day of July, 2019

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