What You Need to Know About Surrogacy in Vermont

What You Need to Know About Surrogacy in Vermont

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Vermont Surrogacy Laws and Information

Is surrogacy legal in Vermont? Can I be a surrogate or intended parent in this state? What are the Vermont surrogacy laws?

These are common, normal questions for anyone considering surrogacy in Vermont to ask. After all, it’s important that you fully understand the legal state of surrogacy in Vermont before committing to this life-changing process.

Fortunately, there are experienced surrogacy professionals who can help you learn more about surrogacy in Vermont, whether you are an intended parent or prospective surrogate. At American Surrogacy, our surrogacy specialists can answer any questions you have about the general surrogacy process and refer you to a local surrogacy attorney in Vermont for all of your legal concerns.

To help you start your research, we’ve answered some of the most common questions about surrogacy laws in Vermont below.

Q: Is surrogacy legal in Vermont?

A: Like many states, Vermont has no surrogacy laws governing this family-building process. However, the courts are generally favorable to surrogacy, which means that both intended parents and surrogates can pursue a surrogacy in Vermont with the guidance of surrogacy professionals.

Q: Is compensated surrogacy legal in Vermont?

A: Yes, as there are no surrogacy laws in Vermont prohibiting the practice of commercial surrogacy.

Q: Is traditional surrogacy legal in Vermont?

A: Yes, traditional surrogacy is legal in Vermont. However, this kind of surrogacy is treated as an adoption under Vermont laws, which means a surrogate may not be able to receive base compensation and may be subject to strict regulations regarding the termination of her parental rights after birth.

Q: What does a surrogacy agreement in Vermont cover, and how does the legal process work?

A: A Vermont surrogacy contract is similar to any other contract created in a state with no surrogacy laws. Vermont professionals — surrogacy agencies and attorneys — have created a process for the proper drafting of a surrogacy contract that protects the rights and interests of all parties involved.

Intended parents and prospective surrogates must be represented by separate Vermont surrogacy attorneys during this legal process. These attorneys will negotiate a document that addresses all important aspects of a Vermont surrogacy, including:

  • Rights and responsibilities for each party
  • Potential risks and liabilities, and the steps to take should they occur
  • Surrogate compensation and other important financial information
  • Agreements on sensitive issues like selective reduction and termination
  • Contact expectations before, during and after the surrogacy
  • And more

Once this contract is signed and finalized, the medical process of surrogacy in Vermont can begin.

Q: Are surrogacy contracts (whether compensated or altruistic) enforceable in Vermont?

A: Surrogacy is neither expressly permitted nor prohibited in Vermont, so the status of surrogacy contracts and their enforceability is vague. Please speak with a local Vermont surrogacy attorney for more legal guidance on this issue.

Q: What are the surrogacy laws in Vermont on parentage orders?

A: In practice, parentage declarations are issued only after birth to married or unmarried couples and individuals who have used their own gametes, as well as to married and unmarried couples who have used donor gametes for one partner, in a Vermont surrogacy.

If there is a single intended parent or a couple who does not have a genetic relationship to the child being born via surrogacy, a parentage order is typically not issued by Vermont surrogacy courts.

Q: Are there any particular laws for parents outside the U.S. who complete a surrogacy in Vermont?

A: No, as there are no surrogacy laws in Vermont that specifically address international intended parents or domestic intended parents.

Q: When do intended parents need to complete an adoption after birth? 

A: If intended parents in a Vermont surrogacy cannot obtain a post-birth parentage order, they will usually need to complete an adoption after birth to establish their parental rights. Usually, these are intended parents who have no genetic relationship to their child born via surrogacy in Vermont.

Q: Does Vermont allow second-parent adoptions? Who would need to complete a second-parent adoption vs. a stepparent adoption (if applicable)?

A: Yes, Vermont does allow second-parent adoptions. However, unmarried couples who complete a second-parent adoption will need to complete a home study before they can be approved for adoption.

Married intended parents who cannot obtain a post-birth parentage order can complete a stepparent adoption, through which the home study requirement is waived.

Q: What happens in cases where intended parents use a donor egg, sperm or embryo?

A: As long as there is one genetic connection to an intended parent in a Vermont surrogacy, the use of a donor gamete will not affect the availability of a post-birth parentage order. However, if intended parents use an embryo donation, they will not be able to obtain a parentage order because of their lack of genetic relationship.

If you plan to use a donor embryo in your Vermont surrogacy, make sure to speak with a local surrogacy attorney to understand the legal steps ahead of you.

Q: Are there any additional laws impacting same-sex surrogacy in Vermont?

A: No. LGBT intended parents are treated equally in a Vermont surrogacy, as there are no surrogacy laws indicating otherwise.

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At American Surrogacy, our specialists welcome intended parents and surrogates in Vermont, whether they wish to complete a surrogacy in their home state or in another surrogacy-friendly state in the U.S. Our agency program can provide all of the case management and support services you need to successfully reach your surrogacy goals.

To learn more about how American Surrogacy can guide you through every step of the Vermont surrogacy process, please call 1-800-875-2229(BABY).

This article is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal advice. Because surrogacy laws in Vermont are always subject to change, please contact a Vermont surrogacy attorney for the best legal guidance on the current state of surrogacy in Vermont.