Make Sure New Law Doesn’t Make Surrogates ‘Useful Wombs’

Anne Else | Newsroom | August 16, 2021

New Zealand’s Adoption Act required that intended parents formally adopt a surrogate-born child from the surrogate, but this was a complicated process and sometimes left children in parentless limbo. The New Zealand Law Commission recently released two new recommended pathways related to parental recognition. The columnist advocates for the pathway that recognizes the birth mother as the legal parent at birth, who will then sign a declaration consenting to relinquish parental rights to the intended parents without a court process. She argues that this method protects the birth mother’s consent, ensures no child is stateless, and provides a simple process for intended parents to become legally recognized.

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Surrogacy Law Overhaul Could End Parents Having to Adopt Their Own Children

Cecile Meier | Stuff | August 1, 2021

This article and video detail the domestic surrogacy process in New Zealand, which requires both surrogate and intended parents to receive approval from the Ethics Committee on Assisted Reproductive Technology (ECART). The process requires medical testing, legal evaluation, and other consultations before fertility treatments begin. A recent Law Commission proposal would no longer require adoption by intended parents if they followed the ECART process. Barrett, parent of a surrogacy-born child, shows disappointment in the component of the proposal that requires the surrogate’s consent post-birth, reasoning that this should happen before conception.

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Law Commission Recommending Significant Changes to Surrogacy Law

Kate Nicol-Williams | TVNZ 1News | July 31, 2021

The New Zealand Law Commission  recommended changes to surrogacy law that would no longer require adoption by intended parents and would legally recognize their parentage from birth. In this article and accompanying video, parents of surrogacy-born children express frustration and heartbreak stemming from the current complicated legal process. Members of the Commission’s advisory group support the proposals to simplify the process, but want to maintain safeguards such as domestic rather than international surrogacy arrangements, children’s rights to information about their origins, and compensation for surrogates.

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Covid 19 Coronavirus: Pandemic Turmoil Stops Parents Reaching Overseas Surrogate Babies

Bill Bonnety | NZ Herald | September 8, 2020

This article highlights New Zealand in the widespread circumstances of intended parents being unable to reach their children born to surrogates due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. New Zealand’s Family Court has created a new protocol to streamline the process of returning children to NZ by enabling the full adoption process to take place overseas, thus giving the child full citizenship before returning to NZ. One member of Parliament supported the change, though also noted the flaw of parents having to undergo adoption proceedings at all after a surrogacy birth.

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