For those unaware of or unclear about their origins, the desire for knowledge can arise in the childhood, adolescence or adulthood.
In Switzerland, every adopted person who has reached legal age has the right to receive information about the identity of their biological parents. Under the new law that came into force in 2018, they can also obtain information about the direct descendants of their biological parents if these are of age and have given permission. Before reaching legal age, the adopted child must claim a legitimate reason in order to get this information.
ISS Switzerland works with the cantonal authorities for adoption and family tracing to support people searching for their origins. We inform adoptees about the process of family tracing and use our international ISS network to conduct a search abroad. If the request comes from abroad, we help tracing in Switzerland. When the searched person is located, we establish contact if both parties agree.