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Surrogacy

Modern science (and altruism) has made it possible for individuals and couples who might previously have been childless to create their own families. How exciting to be contemplating the beginning of your surrogacy journey! Surrogacy is the process by which a woman carries and gives birth to a child for another individual or couple.

The woman who carries the child is called the “surrogate” and the individual or couple for whom she carries the child are called the “intended parent(s)”. It is important for intended parents and surrogates to discuss and agree the arrangements between them. The surrogate cannot be paid a fee but she is able to receive “reasonable expenses”. Surrogacy agreements are unenforceable and surrogacy arrangements rely on trust between all the parties. In fact, although some arrangements do go wrong, the vast majority do not.

How do I apply for a Parental Order?

You can apply for a Parental Order (as a couple or as a single person) after the child is six weeks old and before they are six months, provided they are in your care. The Parental Order means that the child will treated as legally your child from birth and you will be their legal parent(s).

 

I am an Intended Parent and the Surrogate has changed her mind. What can I do?

The Court cannot make a Parental Order unless the surrogate agrees. However, you could apply to the Court for a Child Arrangements Order to secure the child in your care and, later, an adoption order.

 

I am a Surrogate but I no longer want the child I have carried to live with the Intended Parents. What can I do?

The Court cannot make a Parental Order unless you agree. You could apply for a Child Arrangements Order to keep the child in your care.

 

I am a Surrogate and the Intended Parents have pulled out of the agreement. What can I do?

This is a very difficult situation. The Court is unlikely to require Intended Parents to take on care of a child if they do not want to. You may be able to secure a financial contribution from the Intended Parents to help you look after the child.

 

How can The Modern Family Law Company help?

If you have chosen to create your family via surrogacy (or are considering it) we can advise you fully about the complex legal implications and we can apply for a Parental Order for you. Some fertility clinics require you to obtain legal advice before beginning your surrogacy journey and we are approved to provide this. We can also advise and represent you in any contested proceedings arising from a surrogacy agreement, whether you are a Surrogate or Intended Parent.

 

How will we support you on the journey?

Creating your family via surrogacy is the exciting culmination of a well-planned collaborative process between you and your surrogate. It will undoubtedly have its moments of stress and of pure joy. We will be there with you on that journey. In the event that things do not work out as planned, we will be there to advise and represent you. We can refer you to one of our trusted partners e.g. a counsellor or psychotherapist,  if more formal support services are needed.

 

How do I find out more about surrogacy?

Please Get in Touch via our contact page and we'll be delighted to provide further information.

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