Here at Curran Bowles Family Law, we have specialists who can advise in relation to the legal issues surrounding surrogacy arrangements here in Northern Ireland.
Surrogacy is becoming an increasingly common arrangement when a woman carries a child for another on the understanding that, at birth, the child and legal parental responsibility will transfer to the intended parents.
To formalise the position, an application to the Court should be made in order to become the legally recognised parents of the child.
There are two types of surrogacy arrangement; partial or traditional surrogacy, which involves the surrogate donating her eggs and carrying the child, and total or gestational surrogacy where the surrogate is not related to the child. The embryo in the second scenario can be created through using the genetic parents’ egg and sperm; through using the genetic mother’s egg and a donor’s sperm; or through using a donor egg and the genetic father’s sperm.
When the child is born, the legally recognised parent of the child is the surrogate mother. If the surrogate is married, her husband will be considered as the father of the child. A court order is required to alter this position therefore an application for an adoption order or parental order must be made to the Court to confer legal parental responsibility.
A parental order terminates the rights of the surrogate and the birth of the child is re-registered in the names of the parents.
The court must be satisfied that the criteria for the orders to be made have been met. We can advise as to this process. If you are seeking advice about a surrogacy arrangement, get in touch today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 02897512722 to discuss your situation in confidence.