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UK: Legal status of the child born through surrogacy

If the surrogacy arrangement is made in the UK, commissioning parents need to be aware that the surrogate mother is always the legal mother. Her name will appear on the birth certificate. This can be changed subsequently as we shall see very shortly.

The legal father situation is different:

Changing the legal status of the child after surrogacy

Adoption: The commissioning parents need to apply to adopt the child in order to be legally recognised as the parents. This is the case even if the child is biologically 100% theirs. The adoption process is the same as in any other situation.

Parental order: This is a quicker route and has the same effect as adoption. There are criteria to be met before a parental order can be granted. These are:

As can be seen here, there is a lot of things to consider before embarking on surrogacy. That applies to both the commissioning parents and the surrogate mother. Counselling is certainly a good idea and is actively encouraged for all parties. In the UK, this is mandatory. This allows everybody to  consider properly the implications of what they are about to embark upon.

Many countries have yet to enact laws governing surrogacy. This is specially the case with emerging secular democracies like India. It is important for parents seeking parenthood through surrogacy in another country to  study the legal situation thoroughly and carefully before making the emotional and financial commitment. If things go wrong in a foreign country, the impact can be devastating.

Last update: October 06, 2012

adoption is fullfilling

A quest for parenthood through surrogacy is not always successful. For such prospective parents, adoption is an option to consider