Surrogacy and Fertility
Starting a family can be incredibly exciting, but also very stressful if you are undertaking fertility treatment or seeking the assistance of a surrogate. We have a specialist within the team that deals specifically in surrogacy and fertility and can help you understand all the legal implications of your choices and ensure your family is legally protected.
Our specialist fertility team recognise that starting a family can be incredibly exciting, but also very stressful if you are undertaking fertility treatment or seeking the assistance of a surrogate. As well as the usual anxieties that people have when they think about becoming a parent, if you are taking a more progressive path there can be many legal implications.
These legal complexities should not ruin the excitement of becoming a parent and they need not do so. However, it is important that you consider your legal position at an early opportunity so that you can alleviate any concerns you may have and focus on parenthood. A 30 minutes consultation with us at our office in Southampton, Poole, Bournemouth, Salisbury, Winchester and London (by appointment only) will help put your mind at ease.
It is very important that you obtain legal advice if you are considering a surrogacy arrangement as, despite what the law may be in the country where your surrogate is, in the UK the legal mother will always be the surrogate and if the surrogate mother is married her partner will be the second legal parent.
We can assist you in changing that so that you become the legal parents and the surrogate’s legal status is extinguished. If your baby is conceived abroad, we can also help you with immigration law as you may need special entry clearance to bring your baby back into the UK following the surrogacy arrangement.
We are aware that surrogacy arrangements can be expensive and we work with our clients to agree a fixed fee service to suit them, be that full representation until the parental order is obtained or by assisting them in preparing their case so that they feel confident to represent themselves at court hearings.
If you are considering becoming a donor or conceiving with the assistance of a donor it is important you ascertain who will be the legal parents of the child conceived.
If you donate your eggs, you will have no legal rights to the child as the person carrying the child will be the legal mother. However, the position is not as simple if you are a sperm donor or you intend to use donated sperm. When, where and how the sperm is donated are also important considerations and you could find that the donor has legal rights or he has no rights in circumstances where you would like him to.
Our solicitors can help guide you through all complex legal matters concerning donor conception matters.
Donor and co-parenting agreements
A Sperm Donor Agreement is an agreement between the donor and recipient outlining how the sperm will be used. Entering into a donor agreement is particularly important as it invites the donor and recipient to reflect on all the issues donor arrangements can create and allows you to turn your mind to them before any pregnancy.
Co-parenting is the term increasingly used where single people or couples decide to raise a child together outside of a relationship. You should ensure the appropriate people have parental responsibility and enter into a co-parenting agreement to confirm the arrangements for the child will hopefully avoid future disputes.