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Single parents who have had a child born through surrogacy can now apply for parental orders and obtain a UK birth certificate. This means that they can become recognised as the child’s legal parent, extinguishing any rights and responsibilities of the surrogate.
Previously, only couples were eligible to apply. To deal with this discrimination, the Human Fertilisation & Embryology Act 2008 (Remedial) Order 2018 came into force on 3 January 2019, with the purpose of amending the law to make it more compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights.
Better still, the new law doesn’t just affect single parents who are looking at having a child through surrogacy in the future. If you are a single parent who already has a child born through surrogacy, there is now a six-month period in which you can apply for a parental order. This will only remain open until early July 2019. However, it may be possible to apply following this but the application will likely be more complex, so it is important to act now.
Nichola Bright, Senior Solicitor at Myerson said “It is great news that the law has finally changed for the better. Whilst it has never been illegal for single parents to have a child via surrogate, they have had no legal status as parents. The welcomed change levels the playing field for couples and single parents going through surrogacy. Single parents will now have the same legal rights and will be able to apply for parental orders to secure legal parenthood. It is progressive change for modern families”.
We are looking forward to supporting many single parents who have either already had a child through surrogacy or those who are currently planning their surrogacy journey.