4 Things You Need to Know about Surrogacy in Western Australia – Part 1

Rodney Worth
Barrister and Solicitor

Posted on 29/05/2017, Last Updated on 20/03/2019

In this four-part blog, I answer the four most commonly asked questions about surrogacy law in Western Australia:

Part 1 of this blog starts immediately below.

You can access Parts 2, 3 and 4 by clicking on the links above (highlighted in blue), or at the end of this article.

Part 1 – What is surrogacy?

A surrogacy arrangement may be defined as:

An agreement by which a woman will carry a child during gestation and upon his or her birth give over all the indicia of parenthood to another person.[1]

Western Australia did not have specific legislation governing surrogacy arrangements until the enactment of the Surrogacy Act 2008 (WA) (the “Surrogacy Act”)

Generally speaking, the purpose of the Surrogacy Act is to:

…enable the court to transfer, from the birth parents to the arranged parents, the parentage of a child born under a surrogacy arrangement in certain circumstances[2]

It should be noted that reference to “court” in the Surrogacy Act is the Family Court of Western Australia (see section 14 of the Act).

Section 3 of the Surrogacy Act defines the term “surrogacy arrangement” as follows:

surrogacy arrangement means an arrangement for a woman (the birth mother) to seek to become pregnant and give birth to a child and for a person or persons other than the birth mother (the arranged parent or arranged parents) to raise the child, but the term does not include an arrangement entered into after the birth mother becomes pregnant unless it is in variation of a surrogacy arrangement involving the same parties.

Now that we know what a surrogacy arrangement is, in my next article I look at how such an arrangement is made in Western Australia:

The other parts in this series can be accessed by clicking on the following links:

The above information is general in nature, and is not specific advice for your situation. If you have questions about how the information contained this article may apply to your situation, you must seek independent legal advice from surrogacy lawyers.

[1] Butterworths Concise Australian Legal Dictionary (3rd ed), 420.
[2] Surrogacy Act 2008 (WA) s 12.

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