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Surrogacy Laws

What is surrogacy?

The definition of surrogacy is the act of one woman carrying a child that belongs to someone else.

When the baby is born, the woman carrying the baby will not parent the child; the intended parents who contracted the surrogacy arrangement will be the legal parent of the child. The surrogacy definition is pretty straight forward, however many times having to define surrogacy as well as knowing surrogacy laws can bring many unanswered questions. Experts can help answer the different types of surrogacy questions that you may have.

What are the different types of surrogacy?

There are two types of surrogates, Gestational Surrogacy and Traditional Surrogacy.

A Gestational Surrogate is the most common type of surrogacy. A gestational surrogate carries a child that is not related to her in any way. The embryo is usually created through the intended mother's egg and intended father's sperm using In Vitro Fertilization or IVF. It is then transferred to the gestational surrogate, who acts as a human incubator, carrying the parent's baby through to birth. Sometimes the mother's eggs or father's sperm cannot be used. In this case, a donor's egg or sperm is used, and this is called traditional surrogacy.

A Traditional Surrogate acts as both egg donor and surrogate. Traditional Surrogates are impregnated by a process called intrauterine insemination or IUI. A doctor transfers sperm taken from the intended father and transfers the sperm into the uterus of the surrogate so that natural fertilization can take place.

Can a surrogacy contract be made for a sperm donor in Michigan?

Michigan law on this subject states that surrogacy contracts are void and that the sperm donor can be held to be the father of the child and made to pay child support. The MI laws have yet to address the issue of sperm donor anonymity or the fact that they are not considered the parent of the child. Michigan law chapter 722 outlines the law regarding the parentage act and seems that the matter is not addressed to protect the sperm donor.

If someone is artificially inseminated with their son-in-laws sperm can they simply give the son-in-law and daughter custody of the baby in Alabama?

Alabama does not have a surrogacy law. The safest way to handle the situation is to allow your daughter to adopt the child, or to have a surrogacy agreement completed where the child goes to your daughter and son in law. Without some sort of formal transfer of custody you will remain the parent of the child legally. If you have surrogacy law questions, bring your questions to the legal Experts.

Can a surrogate gestational carrier, legally keep the baby once it is born?

In most situations, not generally, but a surrogacy agreement would neutralize any attempts that she made much faster than if there was no agreement. If no surrogacy agreement is made, the chances are greater of having to file a petition in court, going to court, get an order for DNA testing, actually get the testing completed by all parties and paid for, then returning to court before even beginning to have the legal issues resolved.

Surrogate pregnancy and surrogate motherhood are a topic of great debate worldwide. Many groups of people would like to see an end to the practice of commercial surrogacy and cite ethical issues as the cause. Many times these ethical issues can often turn to legal issues. Experts can provide answers to legal questions regarding surrogacy laws.
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