Surrogacy is one option for gay couples (or single gay men) to have children. Some couples adopt children whose parents cannot bring them up, others choose to have children who are genetically theirs. Rather than co-parent with a lesbian couple, some opt for surrogacy. Please see the surrogacy pages in the children section of this website for further details on:
Until 2010 it was not possible for both partners in a gay couple to become the legal parents of their child other than through adoption, which is a complicated and intrusive process and not always available. Since April 2010 gay couples (and unmarried opposite-sex couples and lesbian couples) can regularise their parentage legally through a parental order.
The conditions for a parental order are exactly the same as for any other couple. An application for a parental order has to be made within 6 months from the date of birth of the child. The court cannot extend the time limit.
As for all couples planning surrogacy, we strongly advise you to get in touch with us as early as possible to avoid arrangements, which can make the legal proceedings later on more difficult and costly. It is best to have an initial consultation before choosing a surrogate and then to prepare the legal process of the parental order application during the pregnancy. Once the child is born, you will have a lot of other things to think about as well.
Please also note that single people, such as single gay men, cannot apply for a parental order and, depending on the circumstances, may have no choice but to share paternity with the surrogate. Please find further free information on this point here.
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This is an outline of the law, practice and procedure in England and Wales. It should not be taken as specific advice. All families and couples are different. The law may have changed since this was written and we therefore accept no liability for inaccuracies. Where examples are given, your personal circumstances may vary slightly, but the difference may be significant for the outcome of the legal process. Contact us for specific advice on your own circumstances.
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