A gestational surrogate, or gestational carrier, is not genetically related to the child. The egg from the intended mother (or egg donor) and the sperm from the intended father (or sperm donor) are mixed and the embryos are implanted into the gestational surrogate. Other embryos can be frozen to be used later. Based on current South Carolina law, Brinkley Law Firm, LLC assists intended parents by preparing surrogacy agreements that will later be introduced to the court upon the birth of the child to finalize the intended parents’ legal rights. Currently, there are no provisions in South Carolina law regarding surrogacy, but the limited case law indicates an acceptance of surrogacy contracts which form the basis of post birth orders entered by the court.
Brinkley Law Firm is closely monitoring how the law is developing in the areas of egg donation, embryo donation, and surrogacy in South Carolina and across the nation. In fact, attorney Stephanie Brinkley is Vice Chair of the American Bar Association’s Committee for Assisted Reproduction Technology and a Fellow with the Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys. Both organizations provide a network of professionals which monitor legal and ethical trends in third party reproduction.
Presently, there are few states which have statutory laws clearly addressing the handling of assisted reproductive technology. Until state legislatures or Congress develop statutory laws providing clear procedures and requirements, parties participating in egg donation, embryo donation, or surrogacy must be vigilant in making the process legally and ethically sound.