Access to personal origins: can one search for the identity of one's parents?

Verified 15 March 2022 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

Access to origins for persons born from donor LDCs

Published on 3 August 2021

Rules on access to origins are evolving.

The bioethics act of 2 august 2021 is being applied.

Currently, children born from a sperm or egg donation cannot access the identity or important information about their donor because the donation is anonymous.

The information given on this page remains current and will be amended as soon as the text enters into force.

Children born as a result of an X-linked birth have the possibility to access their personal origins, under certain conditions. On the other hand, children from assisted reproductive technology (ART) who donate sperm or oocytes do not have the opportunity to access their origins.

If you were born to a delivery under X, if you have been placed at child welfare (Ase) or at an adoption agency, you can request access to your origins to know the identity of your parents.

In principle, you must be of age. If you are under guardianship, your guardian must submit the application on your behalf.

However, you can also apply if you are a minor and you are able to judgment. The agreement of your legal representative (parents, adoptive parents, ascendant on-line or from your guardian (if you are ward of government) is required.

Your legal representative may also make a request on your behalf.

The request must be made in writing to the National Council for Access to Personal Origins (CNAOP).

Who shall I contact

You (or your legal representative) must provide proof of your identity:

The application must be accompanied by a completed questionnaire:

Questionnaire to be completed for a request for access to his personal origins


the child welfare department of the departmental council that holds your administrative file can help you make the request.

Who shall I contact

Reporting depends on the situation of the child's birth parents.

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The parents have lifted the secret of their identity

Parents can take the initiative to remove the confidentiality of their identity by sending a letter to the CNAOP. This letter must specify the child's first name, date and place of birth.

Parents should also provide their current contact information.

The CNAOP will then inform them that this decision will be communicated to you (or your legal representative) only if you make a request for access to its origins.

Parents can also ask the CNAOP if a search for access to the origins has already been done by the child.


the descendants, ascendants and siblings of parents of birth can also declare their identity to the CNAOP.

The parents didn't come forward

If the parents have not come forward, the CNAOP will verify with them that they agree that you (or your legal representative) should learn your identity.

The parents died

The identity secret is lifted unless the deceased parent(s) had expressed a contrary wish on the occasion of a request to know your origins.

Thus, if the parent was not interrogated during his lifetime or if, while he was interrogated, he did not refuse the lifting of his identity after his death, his identity may be revealed to you. In this case, a member of the CNAOP notifies the family of the birth parent and offers them psychological support, justified by the unexpected or painful nature of the revelations.

If the identity of the parents has been lifted, the CNAOP will provide you with the following information:

  • Identity of your mother and/or father (and those of descendants, ascendants and siblings)
  • Your origins (place of birth, health of your parents, circumstances of placement, ...)
  • Reasons for your placement in Asia or an adoption agency


when a genetic defect is detected in a child born under X or a ward of the State or in one of its parents, which can cause a serious illness during a medical examination, the CNAOP is authorized to consult the national directory for the identification of natural persons. He can then inform his ascendants or descendants that there is important medical information that may affect them, without revealing the identity of the person concerned.

Access to origins has no effect on civil status and parentage.

It therefore does not give rise to any right and/or obligation for the benefit or at the expense of anyone.

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