AUGUSTA — Concerns about fraud and identity theft are prompting Maine lawmakers to consider a bill to restrict the release of residents’ birth and marriage records.

The Health and Human Services Committee was told today that Maine is just one of 11 states that allow public inspection of birth records and provides certified copies to anyone who requests them. Maine marriage records are also open to the public.

State officials say that opens the door to identity theft and fraud. An administration-backed bill would limit release of those records to the person on the document and that person’s spouse, parents or guardians, descendants and designated agent or attorney.

No one spoke in opposition to the bill today.

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