Since 2005, the state of Illinois has had a surrogacy law on the books. Unlike other states, the Illinois Gestational Surrogacy Act has a few requirements that are distinct and not found in other states like that of in California and Washington. In this article, we discuss the requirements for surrogate and intended parents, and as well as the legal requirements for surrogacy agreements.
Under the Illinois law, a surrogate must meet the following requirements:
She must be over 21 years old;
She has given birth to at least one child;
She has completed a medical and mental health evaluation;
She has undergone a legal consultation regarding the gestational surrogacy agreement with her independent attorney;
She has a health insurance policy that covers major medical treatments and hospitalization, and the term extends throughout the duration of the expected pregnancy and eight weeks after the birth of the child. (Note, the policy may be paid for by intended parents).
Meanwhile, Intended Parents have the following requirements:
They must contribute at least one of the gametes of the pre-embryo to be carried by the surrogate;
At least one intended parent must have a medical need for the surrogacy as evidenced by a physician’s affidavit;
They also must have completed medical and mental health evaluations; and
They have undergone a legal consultation with their own independent counsel.
The surrogacy agreement as well as the medical affidavit between the parties must be witnessed by two witnesses. Once the surrogate is pregnant, the Illinois Parentage Act requires:
The surrogate and her spouse certify that she is carrying the child for the intended parents and did not provide a gamete for the child;
The intended parents certify the child was conceived using a gamete of one of the intended parents and not of the gestational carrier or spouse;
An Illinois licensed physician certifies the same as (2); and
The attorneys for intended parents and surrogate certify compliance with the Gestational Surrogacy Act.
Upon the hospital’s receipt of the certifications, the Illinois' Department of Public Health will issue a birth certificate with the intended parents' names on it. This procedure does not involve a court judgment which means some international or same-sex intended parents may seek a parentage judgment to protect their rights.
For a seamless process, make sure to consult with a lawyer who specializes in surrogacy law. The attorneys of Tsong Law Group have experience in the areas of gamete donation, surrogacy, family law, and more. They are also licensed in the states of Illinois, California, New York, Washington, Arizona, and Oklahoma.
This article is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon without additional research or consulting an attorney. This article is not legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship with the reader.