Surrogacy

If you are considering entering into a surrogacy arrangement, whether as an intended parent or as a surrogate, we can help you to understand your legal rights and take the right steps to protect your family.

Helping you create and protect your rights for your family

Entering into a surrogacy arrangement is one of the biggest decisions you will take in your life. Not only is it a huge emotional and financial commitment, but also the legal issues involved with surrogacy are extremely complex. For example, did you know:

  • A surrogacy agreement, although very useful, is unenforceable in the UK
  • Lawyers who charge for drafting a surrogacy agreement in the UK are committing a criminal offence
  • If the surrogate is married, this can cause complications because her husband will usually be treated as the legal father of the child
  • Midwives and hospitals are increasingly likely to ask for legal confirmation of the surrogacy arrangement
  • If you are involving a fertility clinic, it is vital to complete the right forms, prior to treatment. Not all fertility clinics get this right.
  • A Parental Order is a must, so that both intended parents can acquire legal parenthood for their child, and so that the surrogate’s legal rights and responsibilities are discharged.
  • There is a 6 month time limit from the birth of the child to apply for a Parental Order although in some circumstances the court will approve applications made after this time
  • Foreign birth certificates or pre-birth/pre-registration orders naming intended parents as the legal parents are not recognised in the UK
  • Foreign surrogacy arrangements can give rise to complex immigration issues
  • Currently single applicants cannot apply for a Parental Order
  • If for any reason you cannot apply for a Parental Order there are still steps that you can take to protect your position as a parent 

We can provide focused and cost effective legal advice on the entire surrogacy process, from experts in our nationwide familyhealthcare and immigration teams. We can also help where your existing surrogacy arrangement has gone wrong.


Our lawyers

  • We have one of the largest national family law teams in the country with specialists in child law, surrogacy and adoption. We are highly rated by both our clients and other professionals for our expertise in family law and we regularly deal with cases with international elements. 
  • Our national healthcare team regularly works with the NHS and fertility clinics.
  • Six of our family lawyers are Fellows of the International Academy of Family Lawyers and we are used to working with lawyers and clients from all over the world.

What our clients and others say about us

Our family lawyers are highly rated in both the Chambers UK and Legal 500 directories. Comments about our family lawyers from peers and clients include the following:

  • "The whole service all the way through was impeccable. It was an incredible, no-fuss, no-hassle service from beginning to end and the clarity was unbelievable." (Chambers UK)
  • "They stand head and shoulders above many competitors for their professional approach. As a team, they are knowledgeable, and more importantly, they are able to communicate their knowledge and experience in a client-friendly fashion." (Chambers UK)
  • "At every step, they took the time to explain the detail, never assuming that I just understood the process of law." (Chambers UK)
  •  Offers "an exceptional level of service" to clients (Legal 500)
  • "One of the best in Manchester for family work." (Legal 500)

Legal resources you may find useful

  • Explore our new collection of surrogacy case studies to help you understand some of the legal implications of surrogacy.