Like many states in the U.S., Oklahoma has no defined surrogacy laws — but that doesn’t mean that surrogacy in Oklahoma is dangerous or illegal. On the contrary, Oklahoma surrogacy professionals have created a safe legal and practical process that many intended parents and surrogates have taken advantage of.
You should always ensure you understand the surrogacy laws in Oklahoma before deciding to pursue surrogacy in this state, and an experienced surrogacy attorney can help. In the meantime, American Surrogacy has answered some of the most common questions about surrogacy in Oklahoma below to help you start your research process.
Q: Is surrogacy legal in Oklahoma?
A: Surrogacy is legal in Oklahoma insofar as there are no surrogacy laws in this state. In general, state courts are favorable to intended parents and surrogates who complete a surrogacy in Oklahoma if they have taken the proper legal and practical steps in their process.
Therefore, it’s necessary that you work with experienced surrogacy professionals from the very beginning to have a safe, secure surrogacy in Oklahoma.
Q: Is compensated surrogacy legal in Oklahoma?
A: Yes. There are currently no surrogacy laws in Oklahoma regulating the base compensation a gestational surrogate can receive. However, a traditional surrogate cannot receive compensation, as a traditional surrogacy is treated as an adoption under Oklahoma laws.
Q: Is traditional surrogacy legal in Oklahoma?
A: Yes, but there are strict legal processes involved because of the surrogate’s genetic relationship to the baby she carries. Traditional surrogacy in Oklahoma is treated as an adoption, which means a surrogate cannot receive compensation and there are certain steps that must be followed for a surrogate to relinquish her parental rights.
Q: What does a surrogacy agreement in Oklahoma cover, and how does the legal process work?
A: In order to create an Oklahoma surrogacy agreement, intended parents and their surrogate must be represented by two separate surrogacy attorneys in Oklahoma. This is to ensure that each party’s rights and interests are protected and that the resulting contract is one both parties to the agreement are comfortable with.
The attorneys will negotiate a contract that addresses all important topics of a surrogacy journey, including:
- Rights and responsibilities of each party
- Potential risks and complications for each party
- Surrogate compensation and other important financial information
- Contact expectations before, during and after the surrogacy
- Hospital plans for the surrogate’s delivery
- How the intended parents will establish their parental rights
- And more
Once this contract is finalized and signed, the medical process of surrogacy can begin.
Q: Are surrogacy contracts (whether compensated or altruistic) enforceable in Oklahoma?
A: Because there are no surrogacy laws in Oklahoma that expressly address the enforceability of surrogacy contracts, please speak with an Oklahoma surrogacy attorney for the most accurate answer to this question.
Q: What are the surrogacy laws in Oklahoma on parentage orders?
A: Like in many other states, the availability of parentage orders in Oklahoma surrogacy often depends upon the overseeing judge. Most judges will issue post-birth orders in Oklahoma, although some will issue parentage orders before the child is born.
Usually, the courts only issue parentage orders to couples, married or unmarried, where at least one partner has a genetic link to the child, or to single intended parents who are genetically related to their child born via surrogacy.
In most cases, an Oklahoma surrogacy court will not issue parentage orders to couples or individuals who have no genetic ties to the child being born — unless they are a married, heterosexual couple receiving an embryo donation (as specified by state laws). Instead, they will likely need to complete an adoption after birth.
Intended parents should always speak to a surrogacy attorney in Oklahoma for legal guidance in their particular surrogacy situation.
Q: Are there any particular laws for parents outside the U.S. who complete a surrogacy in Oklahoma?
A: No. International intended parents will be subject to the same laws as domestic intended parents, as well as any federal requirements for travel back to their country with their new baby.
Q: When do intended parents need to complete an adoption after birth?
A: As mentioned, intended parents will need to complete an adoption if they cannot obtain a parentage order. In Oklahoma, this is typically in cases where intended parents have no genetic relationship to their child born via surrogacy.
An experienced surrogacy attorney will be able to determine whether or not you need to complete an adoption in your situation.
Q: Does Oklahoma allow second-parent adoptions? Who would need to complete a second-parent adoption vs. a stepparent adoption (if applicable)?
A: No, second-parent adoptions are not available in Oklahoma. While married couples can complete a stepparent adoption after birth if they can’t obtain a parentage order, unmarried couples will not have an adoption path to take advantage of.
Q: If intended parents cannot complete a second-parent adoption, how can unmarried non-biological intended parents protect their parental rights?
A: Unmarried intended parents in Oklahoma will either need to get married to complete a stepparent adoption in Oklahoma, or complete a second-parent adoption in another state and update their Oklahoma birth certificate upon their return. Remember, these steps are usually only needed in cases where intended parents have no genetic relationship to their child born via surrogacy in Oklahoma.
Q: What happens in cases where intended parents use a donor egg, sperm or embryo?
A: As long as intended parents have at least one genetic relationship to their child born via surrogacy, using a gamete donation will not affect the availability of a post-birth parentage order. Married, heterosexual intended parents who use an embryo donation will also be protected from additional legal steps for establishing parentage.
Oklahoma laws also protect intended parents with a statute on assisted reproduction, which says an egg or sperm donor has no rights to any child born from the donation.
Q: Are there any additional laws impacting same-sex surrogacy in Oklahoma?
A: No. LGBT intended parents are treated equally under the law as any other intended parent in Oklahoma.
If you are considering a surrogacy in Oklahoma — either as an intended parent or prospective surrogate — the surrogacy specialists at American Surrogacy can explain the process ahead of you and help you get started whenever you are ready. In addition to answering any questions you may have, we can refer you to a trusted Oklahoma surrogacy attorney to ensure you’re aware of the Oklahoma surrogacy laws that may affect your personal journey.
To learn more about how American Surrogacy can guide you through your surrogacy journey, please call 1-800-875-2229(BABY).
Surrogacy laws are always subject to change, so American Surrogacy makes no guarantee that the information presented in this article is up-to-date. Therefore, this article should not be taken as legal advice. Please speak with an Oklahoma surrogacy lawyer for more information on the current state of surrogacy in Oklahoma.