Michigan Surrogacy Laws
Surrogacy in Michigan is restricted to altruistic, or uncompensated, surrogacy. Michigan does not distinguish between gestational and traditional surrogacy in the statutes pertaining to surrogacy, although the statute does differentiate between a “surrogate carrier,” which corresponds to a gestational carrier, and a “surrogate mother,” which corresponds to a traditional surrogate. Any compensated surrogacy is subject to criminal penalties. A surrogate parentage contract is void and unenforceable under Michigan law as contrary to public policy.
Types of Surrogacy Available in Michigan
Can a parentage order be obtained for the following?
Although Intended Parent(s) may set up a surrogacy contract in Michigan by which to memorialize the parties’ surrogacy plan, the contract is void and unenforceable. Because no consideration in the form of compensation is involved, it is arguable that the agreement is not a contract in the legal sense of the term. Any commercial surrogacy contract is subject to criminal penalties. Although altruistic surrogates do not receive compensation, they can be reimbursed for medical, legal, and other pregnancy-related expenses during the pregnancy.
Although altruistic traditional surrogacy isn’t prohibited in Michigan, many attorneys and agencies advise against it due to the increased legal risks involved because a surrogate legally can’t be forced to give up her parental rights. Moreover, parentage would have to be established via adoption processes.
Who can be declared as the parent(s) of a child from a surrogate via a court 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.
Attorneys have had success in obtaining parentage orders for unmarried Intended Parents, but it's very likely that a court may not grant such an order. It's also possible that a stepparent adoption may be required in a gestational surrogacy case where only one intended parent is biologically related. Because of the lack of statutes directly addressing surrogacy in Michigan, there is a fair amount of uncertainty in Michigan, although the tendency is for most courts to grant the relief. Stepparent adoption is required to establish parentage in cases of traditional surrogacy. However, Intended Parent(s) must be married in order to finalize a stepparent adoption.
How are Intended Parent(s) Listed on the Birth Certificate?
Intended Parent(s) may be listed as Father-Mother, Parent-Parent, or Father or Mother.
When using a post-birth order, the initial birth certificate will bear the name of the carrier and intended father. Once the other intended parent is established as the child’s legal parent, an amended birth certificate will be issued by the Department of Vital Statistics and the original birth certificate will be sealed.
Rights of Egg or Sperm Donor(s)
According to Michigan statue MCL333.2824(6), “A child conceived by a married woman with the consent of her husband following the utilization of assisted reproductive technology is considered to be the legitimate child of the husband and wife.” Although the statute is gender-neutral in regard to gametes, it is limited in application to only a married husband and wife, although it is arguable that this interpretation could be challenged.
Surrogacy Steps in Michigan
Surrogacy Process in Michigan
Birth Certificate Timeline
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.
Surrogacy parentage contracts in Michigan are not recognized and enforced by the state.
Independent counsel is required for all parties involved in a surrogacy agreement.
Requirements for Surrogates and Intended Parent(s)
Bases of Venue
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.
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