COVID-19 Throws A Wrench Into Surrogacy (Along With Everything Else In The World)

By Ellen Trachman | Above The Law | March 18, 2020

Above the Law highlights how the COVID-19 pandemic is changing the legal landscape of international surrogacy. Read how delayed agreements, changes to physical contact guidelines, and travel restrictions are affecting surrogates, egg providers, and intended parents.

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Egg-freezing: What’s the Success Rate?

BBC News | February 17, 2020

Lord Winston is a professor of fertility studies who is calling into question the UK Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority’s advertised success rate of pregnancy using frozen eggs. As this article and video explain, his estimates rely on measuring the success rate at a different stage of fertility treatment, which—he says—is more accurate than the one used by the HFEA.

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NHS ‘Should Not Pay’ for US Surrogacy After Cancer Misdiagnosis

By Owen Bowcott | The Guardian | December 16, 2019

A woman in the UK has lost her case against a London hospital that, she claims, should compensate her for the costs associated with making commercial surrogacy arrangements in the United States. While the hospital does acknowledge responsibility for the cancer misdiagnosis that led to her infertility, the UK Supreme Court found that payment for commercial surrogacy should not be awarded because commercial surrogacy is not legal in England.

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Babies, Bodies and Borders: The Risks and Rise of Surrogacy

By Alexie Bonavia | JD Supra | August 16, 2019

Surrogacy may be growing in popularity but, as this blog post points out, complications are also on the rise. The author discusses how surrogacy laws in the UK have motivated many potential intended parents to make arrangements overseas, and emphasizes the need for greater international regulations as well as updated domestic laws.

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Report: Multiple Pregnancies Following Assisted Conception

Multiple Pregnancies Following Assisted Conception
By T. El-Toukhy, S. Bhattacharya and V. A. Akande | Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists | February 2018

First published in 2011, under the same title, this report raises an alarm about the risks of multiple pregnancies in assisted reproduction, resulting from the common practice of transferring multiple embryos. Maternal complications, according to the report, include increased risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension, gestational diabetes, peripartum haemorrhage, operative delivery, postpartum depression, and heightened symptoms of anxiety and parenting stress. Multiple pregnancy is also associated with a six-fold increase in the risk of preterm birth, which is a leading cause of infant mortality and long-term mental and physical disabilities, including cerebral palsy, learning difficulties and chronic lung disease.

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Read a summary, along with RCOG’s recommendation that IVF be fully funded by the National Health Service, as a step towards reducing multiple pregnancies and related risks.

 

Article: UK Court of Appeals Rules that Baby Should Live With Surrogate

UK Court of Appeals Rules that Baby Should Live With Surrogate
By NGA Law

This blog is published by a UK-based law firm that specializes in modern family law and has, reportedly, handled many of the UK’s leading cases on surrogacy, assisted reproduction, and LGBT families. It analyzes the rejection of an appeal by a same-sex couple for parental rights and physical custody of their surrogate-delivered child, currently living with the gestational mother in compliance with an earlier court order. It discusses the significance of the case for same-sex intended parents living in the UK and provides suggestions to address “common fears” related to perceptions that surrogacy arrangements frequently involve legal disputes and can result in gestational mothers being granted parental rights.

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Another case – the fifth in the UK – recently tested the country’s legal framework around international commercial surrogacy. In November, a court ruled against a gestational mother’s attempt to keep the child, but complicated matters by granting her restricted visitation. While UK courts have historically decided parental disputes based on the best interests of the child, there are calls for more consistency when such disputes emerge. All eyes are on the Law Commission, which is expected to tackle the issue in the near future. Watch this space.