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The first step to starting a search for an adoptee or birth parents is to obtain all 'non-identifying information.' This information may include: Religion, Profession, Education Level, Ethnic Origin, Height, Weight, Hair Color, Eye Color, Cause of Death, Age at Death, Health Status/Medical History.
This information, depending upon state-by-state law and guidelines can usually be given to either the adoptee, the adoptive parents, and to the birthparents. This is the first step!