Gestational Surrogacy In Maryland
If you have dreamed of becoming a parent but have found traditional methods unsuccessful, you should know that there are viable alternatives worth considering. Besides traditional adoptions, which are available through a variety of pathways, having a child with one or both—or even neither parents’ DNA is definitely a possibility thanks to modern science.
Traditional surrogacy involves artificial insemination of donor sperm using the egg of the surrogate. Therefore, although the baby may or may not have a genetic link to the intended father, there will definitely be a genetic connection to the surrogate. The legal risk here is real because the surrogate will have to legally give up her rights to the child and an adoption will have to take place, making enforcement of any pre-pregnancy contract tenuous.
Gestational surrogacy is also allowed in Maryland and carries less legal risk than traditional surrogacy, making it optimal in situations where it is viable. In this process a fertilized egg may be provided by the intended parents or by donors and is carried by a surrogate who undergoes in vitro fertilization. The child may or may not have a genetic relationship to one or both the intended parents, and their names can be placed on the birth certificate under Maryland law. Gestational surrogacy is an excellent option when women are unable to safely undergo pregnancy, or for same-sex couples who wish to start a family. Laws related to gestational surrogacy are very favorable to intended parents. For the protection of all parties, having a legal contract—a pre-birth order– is important, and can be enforced whether the intended parents are straight or gay, married or single.
An Emphasis on Legal Parentage
When one or both intended parents share a genetic relationship with the child, a pre-birth order is available designating them as the legal parents. Even if neither intended parent shares genetic connections to the child, a pre-birth order can designate the intended parents as legal parents. However, if the surrogate is genetically related, an adoption will have to occur after the birth of the child, wherein the surrogate surrenders all parental rights.
Expanding Your Family
If you are considering surrogacy as a way to expand your family, there are important legal issues that require the attention of an experienced Maryland family law attorney. At The Law Office of Hasson D. Barnes, our knowledgeable Baltimore family law attorneys are obliged to achieve the best possible outcomes for you. Schedule a confidential consultation in our office today.