Surrogacy in the UK
7 August 2019
As we mentioned in yesterday's blog, the future of surrogacy is looking bright with the government committing to revisit the current surrogacy legislation.
In the UK surrogacy is permitted, however, a surrogacy agreement cannot be enforced by law and is a relationship based on trust . As the UK does not support commercialised surrogacy the biggest downfall of a domestic surrogacy is trying to find a willing surrogate.
In the UK, if a surrogate is single and gives birth to a child then she will be the legal mother and the genetic father will be the legal father. If the surrogate is married, the surrogate and her husband or wife will be the legal father or second parent. In order for the intended parents to be named as the legal parents of the child, they will need to apply to the courts for a Parental Order.
In order to apply for a Parental Order as a single applicant you must be over 18, genetically related to the child, have the child living with you and reside permanently in the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man. If you are applying as a couple you must fulfil all of the criteria above as well as either being married, civil partner or living as partners. Only one of you needs to be genetically related to the child. In both cases you must only pay your surrogate 'reasonable expenses'.
The court will grant a Parental Order if they are satisfied that the surrogate and any other legal parent consents to it and the making of such an order would be in the child's best interests.
If you would like to learn more about how to apply for a Parental Order or have any questions on surrogacy or fertility law then please contact our family team who would be happy to help.