Your Guide to Pre-Birth Orders in Surrogacy

Surrogacy is a life-changing journey toward achieving your dreams of parenthood. Having an understanding of how to establish your parentage to your little one is an important component of the surrogacy process.

Surrogacy currently isn’t regulated on a federal level, so each state has their own set of surrogacy laws. Because of this, the legal steps needed to establish parentage can vary.

While state’s laws vary, it’s important to familiarize yourself on how to establish your parental rights. Your surrogacy specialist and lawyer will play an important role in this process. While this guide shouldn’t be taken as legal advice, we’re here to explain everything you need to know about pre-birth orders to help you embark on the legal journey of surrogacy with confidence. 

If you have any questions about the legal process of surrogacy, then contact us online now to connect with a trusted surrogate specialist.

What is a Pre-Birth Order and How Does it Work?

Pre-birth orders in surrogacy are legal documents that establish you as the legal parents of your child born through surrogacy before the birth takes place. These orders are crucial in ensuring a smooth and legal transition of parental rights from the surrogate mother to the intended parents.

The process involves a court petition where you request to be recognized as the legal parents of your unborn child. This process varies depending on the jurisdiction, and in some places, it may involve strict requirements such as a genetic connection between one or both intended parents.

What Happens After a Pre-Birth Parentage Order is Granted?

Once a pre-birth parentage order is granted, it provides legal protection for the intended parents, helping to avoid potential custody disputes or legal challenges after the child is born. These orders are an important part in the surrogacy process as they help create a clear legal framework for all parties involved.

It ensures your child’s best interests are protected and that you can assume full responsibility of your child once they’re born.

How to Get a Pre-Birth Order

In order to file a pre-birth order in surrogacy, you’ll work with your surrogacy lawyer to gather certain documents. You and the surrogate will sign statements of parentage for the unborn baby, and your will have to complete an affidavit stating he or she completed the embryo transfer for the surrogates pregnancy.

Your lawyer may also file additional social documents and evaluations that were prepared during the surrogacy process. If you live in a state where pre-birth orders are legal, the order is filed around the seventh month of pregnancy, although the process can start as early as the fourth month.

Filing a pre-birth parentage court order protects your legal rights and helps the hospital process move more smoothly by:

  • Requiring you to be listed on your child’s birth certificate
  • Allowing you to make medical decisions for your child
  • Helping resolve any insurance issues (if any)
  • Allowing your baby to be discharged from the hospital with you

At American surrogacy, we work closely with you and your lawyer to obtain a pre-birth order based on your state’s laws. Starting the process as early as possible can ensure all the legal guidelines are taken care of.

What Are Pre-Birth Order States?

These surrogacy-friendly states permit surrogacies for all parents, grant pre-birth orders and name the intended parents on the birth certificate.

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • New Hampshire
  • Nevada
  • Oregon
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington

Non-Surrogacy-Friendly States

 On the other hand, these states are generally considered non-surrogacy-friendly states:

  • Michigan
  • New York

All Other States

While some states are entirely surrogacy-friendly and some are mostly unfriendly, most states fall somewhere in between. Surrogacy is able to be practiced in these states, but the laws will differ in regards to the levels of protection for both surrogates and intended parents.

Some of these states are more surrogacy friendly than others. In surrogacy-friendly states, gestational surrogacy is usually permitted by statute or there are no laws prohibiting surrogacy or pre-birth orders. Here are some of the states that are considered more surrogacy-friendly:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • South Dakota
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Wisconsin
  • West Virginia

In less surrogacy-friendly states, surrogacy may be practiced but there may be legal obstacles or additional legal processes that are required to complete the surrogacy. For example, pre-birth orders may not be granted, or surrogacy contracts may be legally unenforceable. These states often have unclear surrogacy laws:

  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Iowa
  • Idaho
  • Indiana
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Oklahoma
  • Tennessee
  • Virginia
  • Wyoming

How to Get a Pre-Birth Order

Before you explore the process of obtaining a pre-birth parentage order, it’s important to work with a reputable surrogacy attorney who is well versed in the laws in your state. When you chose to work with American Surrogacy, we’ll help connect you with a lawyer who’s familiar with pre-birth order laws to help you navigate the legal landscape in your state. 

To begin the legal process of surrogacy, contact us online now to connect with a trusted surrogacy specialist who will guide you through your journey with confidence.

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