The Arrangements That Require a Fertility Lawyer
Building your family with the help of outside parties can be a daunting process. That’s where fertility lawyers come in, ensuring that you don’t have to worry about legal issues on top of everything else and protecting the rights of intended parents who utilize assisted reproductive technology (ART), such as egg donation and gestational surrogacy.
There are various reasons that intended parents might use ART to build their families, from fertility issues to LGBT family-building needs. Fertility lawyers give you peace of mind as you navigate surrogacy contracts, birth certificates, and potential obstacles that could arise on your path to parenthood.
It’s important to work with attorneys who have experience in the fertility field and are committed to staying abreast of the latest developments in assisted reproductive technology. Below are two of the most common arrangements that would require a fertility lawyer.
Surrogacy is the process by which intended parents who cannot conceive a child on their own do so with the assistance of a woman who can. With traditional surrogacy setups, a surrogate donates her egg and carries the child for the intended parents, which means she is genetically linked to the baby. This type of surrogacy is now fairly rare.
Thanks to various technological advances, gestational surrogacy is now far more common than traditional surrogacy. Gestational surrogacy is the process by which the egg and sperm of the intended parents (or donors) undergo in vitro fertilization, and the egg is subsequently placed into the uterus of the surrogate. With this method, the woman carrying the embryo to term is in no way biologically linked to the baby.
In these situations, a surrogacy lawyer will draft a contract to protect the parental rights of the intended parents, as well as the surrogate’s right to proper compensation and care.
It’s important to note that not all states have the same surrogacy laws. Some states, like California, are particularly surrogacy-friendly; some states have no case law or statutes, but surrogacy is practiced; and a few states specifically ban surrogacy.
Egg donation is the process of donating an egg, either to be carried by the egg donor herself (as with a gestational surrogate), or retrieved and carried by the intended parent.
In these cases, fertility lawyers typically draft egg donor agreements in which the donor relinquishes parental rights so that the child born under the agreement is the legal child of the intended parents. In some cases, the donor and intended parents remain anonymous, while in other situations, involved parties may opt to use their real names and allow for the possibility of the donor meeting the child at a future date.
Whatever agreement is reached, the parental-establishment process is finalized in court, where fertility attorneys use written testimony to prove to a judge that the surrogate or donor has agreed to relinquish parental rights and that the intended parents have agreed to be the parent of any child born as the result of the arrangement.
Connect With a Fertility Lawyer
At Falletta & Klein, our attorneys have more than 30 years of fertility law experience. We can assist with birth certificates and passports, answer any questions you may have, and put you at ease during your family-building journey.
To learn more, get in touch with Falletta & Klein today.Back to blog