Assisted Reproduction and Surrogacy

assisted reproduction and surrogacy

The law surrounding assisted reproduction and surrogacy is complex and distinct from traditional family law and principles.

At Myerson, we provide specialist legal advice on assisted reproduction and surrogacy and additional areas relating to the following areas:

  • Family planning in artificial insemination and donor conception cases
  • Acquiring parental rights (Parental Responsibility) for children born via assisted reproduction
  • Donor anonymity
  • Surrogacy and acquiring parental rights via a Parental Order
  • Enforceability of surrogacy arrangements
  • Acquiring parental rights in disputed artificial insemination, donor conception and surrogacy cases

We advise heterosexual, lesbian and gay couples who are considering or have used assisted reproduction and or surrogacy as a means of starting a family.

Myerson are an equal opportunities firm and regularly provide assistance to the LGBT community.


Assisted Reproduction: Quick Guide to Acquiring Parental Rights

Heterosexual Couple Conceiving With Donor Eggs Only
The woman who carries and gives birth to the child is the legal mother.
The mother’s husband/partner whose sperm is used with the donor egg is the legal father.
Heterosexual Couples Conceiving With Both Donor Eggs and Sperm
The woman who carries and gives birth to the child is the legal mother.
The mother’s husband is the legal father; or
If the mother is unmarried, the mother’s partner is the legal father if:

  • The fertility treatment takes place at a licenced UK clinic;
  • The man in question is alive at the time of the treatment; and
  • Written signed notices are given to the clinic by the mother and father stating that they both wish for the man to be treated as the father.

Heterosexual, Lesbian or Gay Couples Using a Surrogate Mother
The surrogate mother is the legal mother.
If the surrogate is married, her husband is the legal father.
If the surrogate is not married, the male whose sperm is used (usually the intended father) is the legal father.
Therefore, the intended parents need to apply for a Parental Order within 6 months of the child’s birth to be registered as the legal mother and father. The effect of a Parental Order abolishes the surrogates (and her husbands, if she is married) legal rights in relation to the child.

Scenario Who is the Legal Parent?
Heterosexual Couple Conceiving With Donor Sperm Only The woman who carries and gives birth to the child is the legal mother.
The mother’s husband is the legal father; or
If the mother is unmarried, the mother’s partner is the legal father if:

  • The fertility treatment takes place at a licenced UK clinic;
  • The man in question is alive at the time of the treatment; and
  • Written signed notices are given to the clinic by the mother and father stating that they both wish for the man to be treated as the father.
Lesbian Couples Conceiving With Donor Sperm The woman who carries and gives birth to the child is the legal mother.
The birth mother’s civil partner or wife is the other legal mother; or
If the birth mother is not in a civil partnership or married, the mother’s partner is the other legal mother if:

  • The fertility treatment takes place at a licenced UK clinic;
  • The woman in question is alive at the time of the treatment; and
  • Written signed notices are given to the clinic by the mother and father stating that they both wish for the man to be treated as the father.

MORE INFORMATION

Mother’s battle to conceive using her deceased daughter’s frozen eggs

Ice Ice Baby

Man Fathers Ten Children in Four Months


How We Can Help


A member of our specialist team will be happy to help.

To discuss Assisted Reproduction and Surrogacy issues, please either use the contact form on the right, email us at lawyers@myerson.co.uk or call us today on +44(0)161 941 4000 to speak to a member of our team.

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Myerson Solicitors LLP
Grosvenor House, 20 Barrington Road, Altrincham, Cheshire, WA14 1HB
Tel: +44(0)161 941 4000
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