Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Ontario's new surrogacy law (and other laws regarding who is the parent of a child)

In Canada, Ontario has just (last month) amended some of its laws regarding the definitions of who are the parents of a child, with implications for surrogacy, among other things.
Bill 28 Projet de loi 28
An Act to amend the
Children’s Law Reform Act,
the Vital Statistics Act
and various other Acts
respecting parentage and
related registrations

Here's the part on surrogacy, which seems to imply that surrogacy in Canada will be subject to legal risk about who the parents are until the child is seven days old.

"7. Where a surrogate and one or more intended parents of
a child to be carried by the surrogate enter into a surrogacy
agreement and a child contemplated by the
agreement is born, the intended parents become the
parents of the child and the surrogate ceases to be a
parent of the child if specified conditions are met.
These conditions include that there are no more than
four intended parents under the agreement, that each of
the parties to the agreement received independent legal
advice before signing, and that the child is conceived
through assisted reproduction. The change in parentage
is also contingent on the surrogate giving written consent
relinquishing the surrogate’s entitlement to parentage
of the child, but the consent may not be given
before the child is seven days old. Until that time, after
the child is born the surrogate and the intended parents
share parental rights and responsibilities respecting the
child, unless the surrogacy agreement provides otherwise.
If the surrogate does not or cannot give consent,
an application may be made to the court for a declaration
of parentage respecting the child. Although a surrogacy
agreement may be used as evidence of parental
intent, it is unenforceable in law. (Section 10)"

Here is some commentary on that and other parts of the law, from the blog Above the Law:
Ontario’s New Surrogacy And Sperm Donation Law Is Both Awesome And Terrible

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