Your brother or sister moved abroad, got divorced, got mad at you after a heated argument, or simply vanished without an apparent reason and without a trace. This happens a lot more often than you may think. Or, perhaps you were separated from your sibling at birth and the time has come to find them.
It can be challenging to reunite with a lost family member and looking for them is just the first step toward reconciliation. Here are some ways to help you get started.
People Lookup Services
People finders have helped siblings reunite. The more information you can provide about a search target, the more helpful these fast and smart search engines will be. They go through birth records, marriage records, divorce records, and any others that are publicly accessible. Since you’ll need to do only one search, you won’t have to pay for a subscription. Moreover, a legitimate provider won’t ask you to subscribe immediately.
Child Welfare Information Gateway
The CWIG is a service of the Administration for Children and Families. It’s a very useful resource outlining the search process steps. Here, you will get important information about how to get adoption records, birth records, and links to relevant institutions in the government organization’s publication Searching for Birth Relatives. It also contains details on how to conduct a search, deal with adoption’s emotional impact, and reunite with biological family members.
Reunion registries can prove helpful, too. In most states, adopted adults are allowed to register with one in the hope of being matched with a birth relative. When this happens, the registry brings the parties in contact. In some states, registries facilitate adoption reunions through a confidential mediation service. Check the National Foster Care and Adoption Directory, which is also accessible through the CWIG, to see whether these services are available in your state. The directory also has a list of support groups.
Anyone who takes the time to search Google will find a myriad of public records readily available. At worst, these will give you an idea of where to start your search. Using a people lookup service is easier because it will get this information faster. In addition, Google search is free.
You can start with basic information to maximize your chances, including their birth, marriage, and death records. The next step is searching for any of your sibling’s known addresses. If you have their old address, you can check whether they’ve moved to a different state or country. In addition, you can try searching your own address – maybe they have registered it somewhere. As you move forward, more details will emerge.
You can search your sibling’s name along with any other information you have about them, including their job, hobbies, interests, or a school or college they went to. In addition, you can reach out to other relatives or mutual friends and acquaintances. If you know about the school they went to, you can also check whether it has an alumni association and contact them if so. These associations are great at keeping track of alumni.
Try DNA Testing
DNA testing can also be an effective way to track down your lost sibling. It’s understandable that you have questions about it, including how it works and how long it takes to get the results. Fortunately, most answers are available online. More information is available from the International Society of Genetic Genealogy.
If you know what your sibling did for a living, you can place an ad with their trade or a professional association. Furthermore, the Salvation Army has helped many people find lost siblings. It may be worth a shot. There might also be some relevant information in an online phone directory, especially if you know what city they last lived in.
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