Surrogacy, IVF and Adoption
Becoming a parent is, for some, not straightforward. Let us guide you through the process.
Having a child is one of the most important decisions you will ever make.
Unfortunately, some couples may have trouble conceiving for medical reasons, and same-sex couples still face significant legal hurdles in becoming parents.
Additionally, some people may desperately want a child, but not be able to find a co-parent to share in that journey.
It is therefore imperative that you receive timely and correct legal advice about the “pathways” to parenthood available to you.
Three common pathways you may have heard of are surrogacy, adoption and IVF (in vitro fertilisation).
Did you know, that in Western Australia, adoption offers the only legal pathway for male same-sex couples to become a child’s legal parents?
Unfortunately same-sex couples are still unable to adopt in the Northern Territory. However, a Bill to legalise adoption by same-sex couples is now before the Northern Territory parliament. The Bill is currently being considered in committee, with a report due to be published in March 2018.
Artificial Conception Procedure (IVF):
IVF in Western Australia is available to single women, female homosexual couples and heterosexual couples who are unable to conceive for medical reasons, or who are at risk of conceiving a child with a genetic abnormality or disease.
There is no legislation in the Northern Territory which governs who can access IVF – the applicable laws are those of South Australia.
In Western Australia, surrogacy is only available to single women and heterosexual couples who are unable to conceive for medical reasons or are at risk of conceiving a child with a genetic abnormality or disease.
In the Northern Territory, there are no specific laws relating to altruistic (non-commercial) surrogacy arrangements.
It is not uncommon for members of the LGBTIQ community to attempt to enter into arrangements between themselves to conceive children, without understanding the relevant legal framework and associated consequences.
For example, a gay man who provides sperm to a lesbian friend in Western Australia will not be legally considered the father of the resulting child, regardless of their intentions.
Before you embark on one of the most wonderful journeys of your life, let’s meet and make sure that your plans for parenthood are legal.