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STATE SURROGACY LAW:

Florida Surrogacy Laws

Overview

Florida law allows both gestational and traditional surrogacy on the basis of several different statutes. Gestational surrogacy is regulated by Ch.742.15 FL Stat., which sets the conditions under which married Intended Parent(s) with at least one genetic connection to their child can file Petitions for Affirmation of Parental Status. 

However, unmarried or single Intended Parent(s) or Intended Parent(s) with no genetic connection to their child can establish parentage via a preplanned adoption agreement under Florida’s adoption code (Ch.63.213 FL Stat). Traditional surrogacy cases are also treated as preplanned adoption agreements.

Types of surrogacy available in Florida

Can a parentage order be obtained for the following?

Although traditional surrogacy is permitted by statute in Florida, many attorneys and agencies advise against it due to the increased legal risks involved because a surrogate can withdraw her consent within 48 hours of the birth of the child since the surrogate is genetically related to the child.

Gestational surrogacy

YES

Commercial surrogacy

YES

Traditional surrogacy

YES

Altruistic surrogacy

YES

Parentage

Who can be declared as the parent(s) of a child from a surrogate via a court parentage order under Florida Statute 742.16?

💚 – Both Intended Parent(s) can be named on the parentage order

💛 – Only a genetic Intended Parent can be named on the parentage order. A non-genetic Intended Parent will need to establish parentage via a second or stepparent adoption following birth.

Single Intended Parents, unmarried Intended Parent(s), and Intended Parent(s) with no genetic connection to their child may receive a parentage order for their child, but the process is treated like a preplanned adoption agreement under Florida Statute 63.213. The pre-planned adoption agreement is similar to surrogacy contracts, providing the same protections and rights to Intended Parent(s) and surrogates. Under the pre-planned adoption agreement, the surrogate signs an adoption consent where she agrees to waive parental rights to the child; this cannot be revoked except in cases of traditional surrogacy where there is a 48-hour waiting period.

How are Intended Parent(s) Listed on the Birth Certificate?

Intended Parent(s) may be listed as Father-Mother or Parent-Parent.

Rights of Egg or Sperm Donor(s)

According to Ch.742.14 FL Stat., egg, sperm or embryo donors relinquish all parental rights to the donated gametes or a resulting child.

Surrogacy Steps in Florida

Surrogacy Process in Florida

Select your agency if applicable

Match with a gestational carrier

Complete medical and psychological evaluations

Select attorneys for the intended parents and gestational carrier and complete the gestational carrier agreement

Begin IVF cycle with surrogate

Delivery

Post-birth order and birth certificate

Florida requires post-birth orders to affirm parentage and name the Intended Parent(s) on the birth certificate

Birth Certificate Timeline

Birth certificate

3-6 weeks

Legal and medical steps involved in the surrogacy process may differ from case to case. Please speak with your agency and attorneys about how the process might look for you.

Court Processes

Surrogacy Contracts

Gestational surrogacy and Traditional surrogacy contracts are regulated and enforced under Florida law.

Independent Counsel

Independent counsel is recommended for all parties involved in a surrogacy agreement.

Requirements for Surrogates and Intended Parent(s)

Surrogates

  • Must be at least 21 years of age 
  • Must have given birth to at least one child 
  • Must undergo a medical and mental health evaluation 
  • Must have a health insurance policy that covers major medical treatments and hospitalization.

Intended Parent(s)

  • Must be married 
  • Must be older than 18 
  • The Intended Mother must be determined by a physician to be:
    • Unable to carry a pregnancy to term
    • In a situation where carrying a pregnancy will risk her own health
    • In a situation where carrying a pregnancy will risk the fetus’ health

Agencies and fertility clinics may have additional requirements based on the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, the American Medical Association, and the American Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys.

Birth Orders

Do courts issue pre-birth orders?

YES

Do courts issue post-birth orders?

YES

Are hearings required to obtain either pre- or post-birth orders?

VARIES

Courts will issue pre-birth orders but they are not required by law. A pre-birth order does not establish legal parentage but is recommended. Post-birth orders are required and will direct Vital Statistics to issue a birth certificate with the Intended Parent(s) name on it.

Bases of Venue

What are the bases of venue?

County where the Intended Parents live; county where the Gestational Carrier lives; county of the child’s birthplace; or a county agreed upon by all parties.

Do rulings vary by venue?

NO

Can you file a motion to waive venue?

YES

International Issues

Because of the statutory support and courts that welcome families of all kinds, international Intended Parent(s) may find doing surrogacy in Florida a friendly, straightforward process. International Intended Parent(s) will have additional legal steps to complete before their return home regarding their country’s immigration and citizen laws that impact the child. It’s imperative the international Intended Parent(s) speak with an experienced attorney in their home country about their situation. The law of more than one country will need to be considered if the Intended Parent(s) are citizens or residents of more than one country. 

Residency Requirements

Does the state impose residency requirements on either the surrogate or Intended Parent(s):

NO

Birth Certificates

Can an international same-sex male couple receive an initial birth certificate naming the biological father and Gestational Carrier?

YES

Can an international same-sex male couple obtain an initial birth certificate naming only the biological father?

NO

Can they receive a subsequent birth certificate naming only the Intended Parent(s) with no mention of the Gestational Carrier?

YES

Passport Timeline

6-8 weeks after submitting birth certificate.

Once the amended birth certificate is received, passports can be expedited through a private passport company for a 1-2 day delivery with an extra fee. Intended Parent(s) can also visit a regional passport agency to receive one within 1-2 business days.

Passports are regulated at the federal level in the United States. To learn more about the process of receiving a US passport, visit Travel.State.gov.

Consulting Attorneys

Alexia Gertz
Alexia Gertz Law
2021 East Commercial Blvd
Suit 207,
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33308
(954) 410-1842
alexia@alexiagertzlaw.com
www.alexiagertzlaw.com

Legal Disclaimer

The content contained in this website is provided for informational purposes only. Content contained herein may or may not reflect the most current legal information on the subject; accordingly, this website is not promised to be correct or complete at any given time. Outcomes referenced should not be interpreted as an indication of future outcomes. Love & Kindness Surrogacy explicitly disclaims all liability for actions taken or not taken based on the contents of this website.

This website does not constitute a replacement for legal advice or counsel. Always consult an attorney before beginning the surrogacy process.

Last updated October 2019

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