Tuesday, November 8, 2016

We are so proud to be a part of this surrogacy journey with Celynn McManus and her husband and their amazing surrogate and her family. Please follow both side’s journey through surrogacy, you can read about the IP experiences on their blog: http://www.ourpeaherpod.com/blog
Then get a view from the other side as you follow their surrogates experience: http://www.bunjourney.weebly.com/
Celynn and her Hubbie on the left. Their surrogate and her Hubbie on the right.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Surrogacy laws for single parents in the UK to change after court ruling

Surrogacy laws which prevent single people from claiming parental rights are set to change following a ruling by the Family Division of the High Court.

 The court ruled earlier this month that a single man who fathered a child via a surrogate mother had his right to raise the child discriminated against.

 The man claimed the current law meant an application for a "parental order" could only be made by two people.

The government said it was now considering updating the legislation.

The child was born in August 2014 in Minnesota in the US, to an American surrogate mother using the father's sperm and a third party donor's egg.

The father then returned to the UK, bringing the child, known in court as “Z”, with him. But legally he did not have parental responsibility for the child, as under British law the surrogate mother is regarded as his mother, whatever the wishes of either party.

The current laws, the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008, allow married couples, civil partners and couples in an "enduring family relationship" to apply for parental orders after a surrogacy arrangement.

This transfers legal parenthood from the surrogate mother to the commissioning parents. But the legislation does not currently allow parental orders to be awarded to single people.

In this case, the only option available to the would-be father was to apply to adopt the child.

Sir James Munby, the most senior family court judge in England and Wales, has agreed with the father, who said the legislation was incompatible with human rights laws.

The president of the Family Division of the High Court made a "declaration of incompatibility" in a ruling, after considering the case at a hearing in London.

He also said the child had been made a ward of court at an earlier stage of litigation and been placed in his father's care.

Adoption 'solution'

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt's legal team had accepted that provisions of the Act were incompatible with human rights covering respect for family life and discrimination.

Barrister Samantha Broadfoot, representing Mr Hunt, told the judge: "It is accepted that there is a difference in treatment between a single person entering into a lawful surrogacy arrangement and a couple entering the same arrangement."

She did add that adoption was an "available solution".

Sir James gave the man permission to make further applications relating to parental status.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said: "We accept this judgment from the High Court. We will be looking to update the legislation on parental orders, and are considering how best to do this."

Friday, February 26, 2016

SSA at Families Through Surrogacy seminar in Australia

Lauri and Kathryn are in Australia in support of Families Through Surrogacy, who is hosting a multi city seminar series on what’s new in surrogacy.

Here are some of Lauri's notes:

Our first seminar session was in Sydney – very well attended – probably about 40 people.  Kathryn and I spoke about “Costs of Surrogacy in the US” – why it’s so expensive and how to keep costs down.   And “what makes a good surrogacy match” --- how an agency should match IPs with surrogates, what’s important, etc.

Lots of interest from the audience and looks like SSA will be helping lots of Aussies to do surrogacy in the States.  We loved talking with the Aussies, what a great group of people!

Surrogacy is legal in Australia but it is uncompensated, and very difficult to make happen.

Sam Everingham from Families Through gave a presentation that reviewed the current status of all international countries for surrogacy; it was a wonderful presentation with new facts and information, click here for the pdf, FTS surrogacy presentation.

The take away from the presentation is the US is quickly becoming the only really legal place to do surrogacy; there are some other options, like Cambodia, Greece and Nigeria.  But all of these countries have serious downsides.  Sadly Mexico is pretty much closed, ending its surrogacy program. Thailand is closed, India is now closed and Nepal is “sort of open” but is very questionable.

Next, we did conference in Gold Coast, which had a much smaller turnout, but we spoke with a few people who made strong impacts on us.  One mother in law, probably in her 60s, was a surrogate for her daughter in law – how amazing!! – but she lost the baby at 23 weeks.  So tragic and heart wrenching.

We had a short break in Cairns, where we went diving at the Great Barrier Reef, it so wonderful!

Next stop for the seminar is in Adelaide, then on to Perth, and finally in Melbourne.

We’ll keep you posted of all the information that comes out the seminar!