supporting the adoption & looked-after communities

Tracing

For Social Workers: ROTS (Regional Origins Tracing Service)

ROTS has been operating successfully from 1 October 2003 and will continue to operate subject to funding. ROTS is a FREE tracing service open to all Family and Childcare Social Workers in the statutory and 2* voluntary organisations in Northern Ireland. ROTS can only be used by social workers searching on behalf of adoptees, birth mothers and birth siblings and those who are looked after.

How is works: the social worker asks their client to sign a consent form to use ROTS, then sends (via email/post) a referral form to Adopt containing the name of the person to be traced and any other relevant information that may assist in the trace. When the trace is complete, a report of the findings is forwarded to the social worker. Upon confirmation from the social worker that the case is closed, Adopt’s copy of that information will be shredded except for basic non-identifying information kept for statistical purposes.

* Adoption Routes and Family Care Society

For agencies outside Northern Ireland (OATS)

OATS stands for Outside Agencies’ Tracing Service. This tracing service was setup in April 2009 and is for those social workers and agencies who do not qualify to use ROTS, such as childcare social workers employed outside Northern Ireland. It operates in exactly the same way ROTS operates at a fee of £100 per search.

How is works: the social worker asks their client to sign a consent form to use OATS, then sends (via email/post) a referral form to Adopt containing the name of the person to be traced and any other relevant information that may assist in the trace. When the trace is complete, a report of the findings is forwarded to the social worker. Upon confirmation from the social worker that the case is closed, Adopt’s copy of that information will be shredded except for basic non-identifying information kept for statistical purposes.

For individuals anywhere: Private Tracing Service (PTS)

Adopt provide a tracing service for adult adoptees and adults who have been looked after. No identifying information gathered by Adopt will be given directly to a client. The client will be asked to nominate a registered agency to act as intermediary and the information will be forwarded to them.

How it works: an individual contacts Adopt via phone, writing, email or in person. An assessment of their support needs and information will be carried out. Adopt will provide the required support or will refer to other support organisations where necessary. Adopt will be given a copy of any relevant information. Upon payment of the fee of £150 the search will commence. When the search is complete, Adopt will write a report for the client of the findings excluding identifying information. When/if the client nominates an intermediary, a report with identifying information will be forwarded to them. Clients’ files will be held by Adopt in a fireproof filing cabinet for a period of three years after which time they will be shredded.

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