Medical Tourism

Countries that Permit Surrogacy: A Detailed Guide to Legal Options

Medical Tourism

Introduction to Surrogacy and Its Legal Considerations

Surrogacy is a process wherein a woman (the surrogate) agrees to carry a pregnancy for someone else (the intended parent or parents), who will ultimately become the child's legal parents. However, surrogacy is a complicated process, intersecting medical, ethical, and legal considerations. As such, the legalities of surrogacy are subject to considerable international variation. Here, we provide a detailed guide to some countries where surrogacy is permitted and the respective legal nuances.

Surrogacy in the United States

In the United States, surrogacy laws are handled at the state level, leading to a patchwork of different regulations across the country. States such as California are particularly surrogacy-friendly, fully allowing gestational surrogacy and providing clear processes for establishing parental rights. However, some states have restrictions or outright bans on surrogacy, demonstrating the importance of understanding local laws.

Surrogacy in Canada

Canadian laws permit altruistic surrogacy nationwide. The Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits paying a surrogate mother any form of compensation beyond reimbursing her for pregnancy-related costs. Intended parents have a pathway to legal parenthood without needing to undergo the adoption process, though procedures may vary by province.

Surrogacy in the United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, surrogacy is permitted, but it is regulated closely. Only altruistic surrogacy is allowed, meaning surrogate mothers can only be reimbursed for reasonable expenses. Notably, UK law considers the surrogate mother the legal mother at birth, and intended parents must obtain a parental order to establish their legal parenthood.

Surrogacy in Greece

Greece is one of the few countries in Europe where altruistic surrogacy is permitted. In 2002, the Greek government legalized surrogacy for married couples unable to conceive naturally. However, surrogates cannot receive payment beyond reasonable expenses.

Surrogacy in Ukraine

Ukraine is known for its permissive surrogacy laws. Both altruistic and commercial surrogacy are permitted, and the intended parents are recognized as the legal parents from the moment of conception. However, surrogacy in Ukraine is restricted to heterosexual, married foreign couples and single women.

Conclusion: Understanding the Legal Framework of Surrogacy

Navigating the intricacies of international surrogacy laws requires comprehensive understanding and professional guidance. The laws vary extensively across countries, each with its regulations about surrogate compensation, establishment of legal parentage, and eligibility criteria for intended parents and surrogates.

For more detailed information on surrogacy and to explore your options, consider visiting To start your surrogacy journey, you can download a comprehensive guide at Armed with the right knowledge and professional guidance, surrogacy can be a fulfilling path to parenthood.

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