Section 60HB Family Law Act discusses information related to children born under surrogacy arrangements. Aspiring mothers can opt for surrogacy arrangements if required, thanks to modern-day technology. Also, this still applies to same-sex couples who cannot give birth to a child themselves.
The Surrogacy Act 2010 regulates surrogacy in New South Wales (NSW). Additionally, surrogacy laws apply to intended parents residing in NSW. This is still the case if the birthing mother (the surrogate) lives in another state. This article will discuss Section 60HB of the Family Law Act 1975 and how surrogacy arrangements work.
Section 60HB Family Law Act: Surrogacy in NSW
It is true that surrogacy has been a debatable issue in Australia. Moreover, some people see it as being unethical and harmful for the child and the birth parents. Commercial surrogacy is where a woman receives payment to birth a child on behalf of someone.
On the other hand, altruistic surrogacy is where the birth mother births a child with no monetary gains in return. An issue that parents face in regards to surrogacy is gaining parental rights over the child. This is because the birth mother is still the legal parent.
Thus the child will still bear the birth mother’s surname on the birth certificate. When the child grows older, the child might also be denied inheritances and legal rights. Previously, the only way for parents to gain full rights over a surrogate child was through adoption. Although, now the approval of the Surrogacy Act in NSW allows parents to gain parenting rights.
Eligibility For Surrogacy
Parents opting for surrogacy arrangements must apply to the Supreme Court of NSW thirty days after the birth. If granted, they gain full parenting rights to the surrogate child and alter the birth certificate to the parents’ surname. Here are the requirements in order to gain rights for surrogate children:
- The child must be born through altruistic surrogacy arrangements;
- The birth mother must be at least 25;
- Intended parents must be at least 18 years of age. Moreover, intended parents under 25 must show proof to the court that they are capable of parenting;
- All parties must obtain legal advice and counselling;
- All parties must have given consent to the agreement prior to the surrogacy arrangements;
- The child must be living with the intended parents at the time the application was made; and
- All parties must sign a Surrogacy Agreement.
FAMILY LAW ACT 1975 – SECT 60HB
Children born under surrogacy arrangements
(1) If a court has made an order under a prescribed law of a State or Territory to the effect that:
(a) a child is the child of one or more persons; or
(b) each of one or more persons is a parent of a child;
then, for the purposes of this Act, the child is the child of each of those persons.
(2) In this section:
“this Act” includes the applicable Rules of Court.
Reminders Before Opting For Surrogacy
The intended parents and the surrogate mother should also contact their IVF clinic to discuss surrogacy arrangements. Importantly, intended parents should also seek legal advice as there are legal implications for surrogacy in Australia.JB Solicitors can assist parents seeking surrogacy arrangements. Our family lawyers can provide proper legal counsel.
Adoption can also be lengthy and complex and our family lawyers will discuss the different laws for the procedure. Should family disputes arise, we offer mediation services for disputed parties. Mediation will help parents avoid costly court procedures by guiding them with out-of-court arrangements for parenting and adoption.
Contact JB Solicitors today for your surrogacy and adoption matters.