Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Florida Couple to Appeal Court's Decision in Surrogacy Case

The Lamitinas have appealed the court's ruling denying the Intended Father any visitation to his biological child. The Florida court ruled in favor of the traditional surrogate (a woman who donates her egg and carries and gives birth to the child), Stephanie Eckard, who gave birth to the child, a girl, five months ago.

The Lamitinas have a child from a previous surrogacy relationship and did not use the services of any attorney to have that child, nor did they work with an attorney for this surrogacy arrangment.

Again, I cannot stress the importance of working with an attorney who specializes in assisted reproduction law when you are using a third-party to help you create a child. It is critical that all parties are represented by an attorney who can explain your rights, responsibilities and duties under the contract.

See the article from the couples' Today show appearance here.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Surrogate Makes a Difference

There are a few questions every one of my clients ask me and they are: 1. Why does she want to be a surrogate, and 2. Will she have any rights to my child. The article below really sheds light on the giving heart of most surrogates. Yes, the money is nice, but money is not the motivating factor for the majority of women who make the decision to carry another's child. They do it to make a difference. To answer question # 2, if you select your surrogate from a state where surrogacy is practiced, legally you are protected and should be declared the parents of your children (or child) before they are born. But, this article really shows that surrogates do not want the children. They have their own family and want to help the couple or individual create, or add to, their own. See complete article here.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Single Embyro Transfer in Older Women Proving Successful

Women older than 35 who underwent elective single blastocyst (five-day embyro transfer) at Standford School of Medicine achieved a pregnancy rate of 62.2%. Three women miscarried, with the live birth rate of 51.1%. None of the pregnancies resulted in multiples, which is a greater concern in older woman as they can experience more complications, not only for themselves, but for their unborn children. Even more promising is the fact that all of the women in the study used their own eggs and the oldest woman was 42.9. See the full article here.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Surrogacy in Arkansas Viable Option for Gays & Lesbians

A recent post on states that Arkansas has two advantages not found in any other state:

"First, the marital status of the surrogate is irrelevant; and no adoption is necessary after the birth of the child to the surrogate parent. The birth certificate lists the parents as those intended in the surrogacy contract."

While California has not provided legislation regarding surrogacy, the case law provides for the same thing. The marital status of the surrogate is irrelevant and no adoption is necessary to place the Intended Parents names on the birth certificate. The intent of the parties controls as evidenced in the legal contract the parties entered into prior to the embryo transfer.

In fact, in California the Intended Parents are declared the parents by court order prior to the birth of their child(ren).

While I knew that Arkansas was a surrogate-friendly state, I had no idea that the laws were so favorable and I applaud the legislature for their insight as they could have drafted legislation similar to Texas and North Dakota where the Intended Parents must be a married heterosexual couple in order for the law to apply.

60 Year Old Grandmother Gives Birth to Grandchildren

A 60-year old woman gave birth to her Grandchildren in India on September 21. The children are doing fine and are not receiving natal care. The 60-year old did suffer from high blood pressure and delivered the twins at 32 weeks via cesarean section, but I believe the gestational carrier is doing well. Recently, a woman in her Fifties gave birth to her grandchild and I have a client whose mother is carrying her second child for her. Her mother is in her mid-Fifties. The doctors did express their concern for the woman's health, but apparently she insisted on being her daughter's carrier. The majority of family surrogacy cases that I have worked on are sisters or cousins. It is very rare for a mother to carry for her daughter, as the health risks can be very serious. You can read the full article here.