Surrogacy Contracts

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What Is a Surrogate Mother?

A surrogacy arrangement is usually created when a couple, who cannot have a baby for whatever reason, contracts with a woman to carry their fertilized embryo. The rise and success of in vitro fertilization, and the increase in sperm, egg, and embryo donation have called into question the enforceability of surrogacy contracts.

Are Surrogacy Contracts Legal?

Whether a surrogacy contract is enforceable depends on the resolution of a number of issues. First, courts must decide whether such a contract is void as against public policy or voidable by the birth mother. If the contract is enforceable, then the proper remedy for the breach of the agreement must be determined. Some courts may order the mother to hand over the child, whereas other courts will only allow monetary damages.

Are Surrogacy Contract Valid Everywhere?

Each state has its own legal approach to surrogacy and surrogacy contracts. Some states make surrogacy contracts enforceable, while others forbid or even criminalize it. For example:

Do I Need a Lawyer?

If you are a couple seeking to enter into a surrogacy agreement or if you are a woman contemplating becoming a surrogate, it may be helpful to contact an experienced family law lawyer. A family attorney can help you understand how your state's laws affect your surrogacy contract.

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Last Modified: 10-03-2016 09:00 PM PDT

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