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Surrogacy in Miami and South Florida
Surrogacy is a fertility treatment option where a woman carries a child for another woman or couple who cannot conceive or carry a pregnancy to term. Surrogacy is also gaining popularity for gay men who want to have a biological connection to their child.
There are two types of surrogacy: traditional surrogacy and gestational surrogacy. In traditional surrogacy, the surrogate is inseminated with sperm from the male partner, resulting in a child biologically related to the surrogate. In gestational surrogacy, the woman is implanted with an embryo comprised of egg and sperm by the intended parents or donor egg and sperm.
Surrogacy Law in Florida
Florida is one of the few states that has clear and comprehensive laws regarding surrogacy. Surrogacy is well-protected in Florida, making it an attractive location to host surrogacies from all over. Florida has two statutes that deal with traditional and gestational surrogacy.
Florida Statute 63.212 for Traditional Surrogacy
This statute clarifies certain requirements for “Pre-Planned Adoption Agreements”, as traditional surrogacy is called in Florida law. The surrogate must sign an agreement saying she is carrying the biological child of the intended father, and after birth, the intended couple will have custody of the child and will later adopt him or her. The agreement is not considered final until seven days after the birth of the child. The statute also clarifies that no fee or compensation can be given to the surrogate, although reasonable living expenses and health care is paid.
Florida Statute 742.15 for Gestational Surrogacy
According to this statute, a gestational surrogate must sign an agreement that she will carry a child for a couple, and will surrender the baby to the intended parents after birth.
In order for the statute to be enforceable, the intended parents must be over 18 and married to each other. A physician must have determined that the woman could not conceive or carry a pregnancy to term, and that pregnancy would cause a great health risk to the mother or the fetus. For the surrogate contract to be legal, the surrogate mother must be over 18, consent to medical evaluation and treatment, and relinquish her rights to the child after birth.
Like in traditional surrogacy, no compensation or fees can be paid to the surrogate, other than reasonable living expenses.
After a child is born from gestational surrogacy, the intended parents will establish parental status of the child on his or her birth certificate, without having to go through a paternity or adoption process. Florida is one of only two states to do this.
South Florida and Miami Surrogacy Agencies
The South Florida and Miami area has several well-respected surrogacy agencies that match up intended parents with surrogates. These programs require the surrogates to go through extensive psychological and physical tests. Many offer surrogate therapy.
- Advocates for Surrogacy
- Charlotte H. Danciu, P.A.
- The Surrogacy & Egg Donation Center
Choosing a surrogacy agency is a difficult decision, and it is important to research each agency carefully so you can become familiar with the fees involved and responsibilities included. Surrogacy is often considered the most legally complex assisted reproductive technology procedure, so it is recommended you retain the services of a lawyer who specializes in surrogacy or assisted reproductive technology.