The techniques used to search for ancestors can also be used to look for living people. Among those who might wish to use this service are adoptees looking for birth parents, siblings who were separated by divorce or other family trauma, and people seeking their best friend from childhood. While television shows like CSI and NCIS find criminals simply by entering their name in a comprehensive database, this is not the case in real life. Records related to the living, such as birth certificates, are largely restricted by state laws, which vary from state to state.
Just like ancestors, some people leave an extensive digital footprint and others leave virtually none. In fact, some people go out of their way not to be found. Because of the restrictions on data access, any clue you can provide about the person you seek will help improve the chances of success. Useful information includes: last known address, a person’s hobbies or interests, family rumors, nicknames, where they went to high school, and the names of their extended family members.
Researchers at Genealogists.com are experts in using sources such as social media, directories, yearbooks, and newspapers. We also analyze patterns of movement and connections. And finally, we are cognizant of changing state laws, especially regarding which states allow adoptees to access their adoption records.