Long awaited changes to surrogacy laws in the ACT have been proposed today.
The Parentage (Surrogacy) Amendment Bill 2023 was introduced to the Legislative Assembly this morning.
In summary, some of the proposed changes include:
- Mandated legal advice, counselling, a written agreement before conception;
- Traditional surrogacy will be permitted (meaning the surrogate can use her own ovum to conceive, in line with other states);
- Single persons will be able to enter into surrogacy arrangements;
- The transfer of the embryo procedure to the surrogate will no longer need to occur in the ACT;
- It will remove restrictions on advertising for a surrogate to make it easier for intended parents to connect with potential surrogates.
- There will be liberty to the Supreme Court to make parentage orders for children born through commercial surrogacy if a child is facing a “pressing disadvantage”.
Many of these proposed changes are similar to the other states’ legislation.
The ACT was the first state in Australia to introduce legislation about surrogacy in 2004, but now every other state has introduced legislation and arguably the ACT legislation has become outdated.
These changes are welcome and a step in the right direction towards uniform laws across Australia.
We are watching to see when this bill is likely to come into effect.
Article By: Kirsty McLeod
Kirsty began her career in New Zealand but (fortunately for us) moved to Australia in 2010. She is our go-to person for surrogacy and parentage work (which is really complicated, so you’ll need an expert) and has spoken at conferences and even participated in a parliamentary roundtable inquiry on the subject. She has run lots of contested and tricky parenting cases. Kirsty also has a degree in economics, so she’s all over hard financial cases.