Surrogacy can help you build the family you’ve dreamed of, but depending on state law, you may face legal challenges during the process. A surrogacy professional can help you determine the best course of action for your family.
You can get connected to a surrogacy professional now, who can help you find a surrogacy lawyer and navigate the legal procedures of surrogacy to assure that your surrogacy process can be completed.
Having an understanding of states that allow surrogacy can help you feel more confident and informed as you navigate your surrogacy process.
Is Surrogacy Legal in All 50 States?
No, surrogacy is not legally protected in all 50 states. There are no federal laws that regulate surrogacy on the national level, so individual states have varying laws that govern the process. In some states the practice of paid surrogacy is illegal, and in other surrogacy arrangements are not legally binding. However, in most states, surrogacy is allowed and practiced.
Where is Surrogacy Legal in the United States?
Although surrogacy laws vary widely from state to state, most states allow surrogacy in some form. A simpler question is –where is surrogacy illegal in the US? The answer: Arizona prohibits surrogacy, in Indiana, Michigan, Nebraska, and New York surrogacy contracts are void and unenforceable, and in Louisiana, surrogacy arrangements are very limited by law and you can face steep fines or prison time if guidelines are not followed.
Surrogate Friendly States
While surrogacy is allowed in many states, there are a few states where surrogacy is a well-established practice and both intended parents and surrogates can rely more on laws to protect both parties in most cases. Within surrogacy practices, these states are often considered more “surrogacy-friendly” states.
Surrogacy-friendly states include:
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey
- Rhode Island
- South Dakota
States that Allow Surrogacy
The definition of “surrogacy friendly” is not well established or consistent as each state truly has its own laws and ways of handling surrogacy. The states that haven’t been listed above may be friendly to surrogacy but generally fall within the middle—not the friendliest possible towards surrogacy, but also generally allow surrogacy in some or most cases.
In these states, courts may enforce surrogacy contracts in some cases but not in others, may automatically link parentage to genetic relation, marriage, or sexual orientation, or may have inconsistent results in surrogacy proceedings about similar situations between different judges based on things like marital status, sexual orientation, marriage, or single parenthood.
Overall, though, surrogacy is still practiced and not prohibited, and with the guidance of surrogacy professionals, you can still grow your family with confidence.
Gay Surrogacy Laws by State
Surrogacy laws are inconsistent from state to state, and even more inconsistent for LGBTQ couples. LGBTQ couples who are pursuing surrogacy should stay aware of state-to-state differences and should be certain to find a surrogacy agency and surrogacy lawyer who are thoroughly familiar with state surrogacy laws for LGBTQ couples.
While states that allow surrogacy are often friendly to surrogacy for LGBTQ couples, the states that limit surrogacy often limit LGBTQ couples, in some cases because of legal marriage requirements, and in some cases because of genetic relation being a determining factor in establishing parentage.
LGBTQ couples should seek out guidance from a surrogacy professional and use extra caution when connecting to surrogacy services in a state that is not friendly towards surrogacy.
State By State Surrogacy Laws Can Change
As a final reminder, laws about surrogacy vary from state to state, and unless you are trained in surrogacy law, it can be difficult to determine a course of action when you are pursuing surrogacy.
Additionally, since most surrogacy laws are relatively recent, and state laws can change, it is important to find a surrogacy agency that can help you stay up to date with any changes in surrogacy requirements and laws. If you have questions about surrogacy laws by state, you can get free information from a surrogacy professional now.