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Divorce law blog

Surrogacy and Separation

25/11/2015   By: Rose-Marie Drury

Surrogacy and Separation

Putting your children first is often parents' first priority when separating.

A few months ago I wrote about the impact surrogacy arrangements have on legal parenthood. So, what happens when intended parents of children born through surrogacy then separate?

If you have obtained a parental order from the English court naming you as legal parents then how your child was born has no impact on your child when you separate. If you're separating and want to learn more about how you can put your child first there's lots of handy information here.

If you haven't obtained a parental order from the English court (or if your child hasn't been born yet) then even if you are genetically related to your child, have obtained an order from a foreign court or have a foreign birth certificate naming you as legal parents you will need to deal with the additional issue of legal parentage. Without a parental order you and your partner may not be recognised as the legal parents of your child so you should check the position - see my previous blog here.

Although as a couple you have separated it's important for your child to resolve this issue as otherwise it can have lifelong consequences for them such as:

1) You and your partners' ability to exercise parental responsibility for your child;
2) Your child's ability to inherit as you or your partner's child;
3) Your child's nationality and immigration status.

Once you've separated, the options available to you vary depending on your individual circumstances. It's therefore important you take legal advice as soon as possible so that you and your partner can agree what option is in your child's best interest. Agreeing with your partner when you've separated might feel very difficult to do but leaving matters may reduce the options available to your family and can have a huge impact on your child. Putting your child first means dealing with this issue now.

Rose-Marie Drury
Family Law Associate

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