senate Bill S2547

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Eliminates the prohibition on surrogate parenting contracts; repealer

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee

  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to judiciary
Jan 18, 2013 referred to judiciary


S2547 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Law Section:
Domestic Relations Law
Laws Affected:
Rpld Art 8, Dom Rel L

S2547 - Bill Texts

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Eliminates the prohibition on surrogate parenting contracts.

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TITLE OF BILL: An act to repeal article 8 of the domestic relations
law, relating to the prohibition of surrogate parenting contracts

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To ensure that loving and committed
couples have every opportunity to raise and nurture their own genet-
ically linked children - including the utilization of a gestational
surrogate parenting contracts - a practice currently prohibited under
New York State Law.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: The legislation repeals Article 8 of
the Domestic Relations Law that specifically prohibits the use of surro-
gate parenting contracts.

JUSTIFICATION: On July 17, 1993, New York State passed an outright
prohibition on commercial surrogacy agreements. Commercial surrogacy
agreements - in which a woman is paid to carry and bear the product of
her egg and donor sperm or an implanted fertilized egg -- is completely
banned in New York by Article 8 of the New York State Domestic Relations
Law. The state is one of only four in the nation with such a ban.

Concern about commercial surrogacy arrangements reached a peak during
the 1988 New Jersey Case, in the Matter of Baby M (A.2d 1227 (NJ.
1988)), a traditional surrogacy arrangement. In traditional surrogacy,
the surrogate herself provides the eggs and is therefore genetically
related to the child. This form of surrogacy is the older method and can
result in legal uncertainty for the contracting parties because of the
genetic link between the surrogate and the baby, as was demonstrated in
the "Baby M" case. In this case, a New Jersey court ruled that the
surrogacy contract was invalid according to public policy and recognized
the surrogate - not woman who had initiated the surrogacy contract -- as
the child's legal mother.

The "Baby M" case took place prior to widespread scientific advancements
in New York and elsewhere that have made in vitro fertilization ("IVF')
a mainstay medical technology and since obviated the need for tradi-
tional surrogacy. Instead, gestational surrogacy is the preferred surro-
gacy arrangement. In gestational surrogacy, the surrogate carries a
pregnancy and delivers a child that is created from the egg and the
sperm of the intended parents and /or donor egg and /or donor sperm
and/or donated embryos in any combination. The key to this type of
surrogacy is that the gestational surrogate is not genetically related
to the child and acts only as a gestational carrier for the pregnancy.

The infamous "Baby M" case led to a number of states banning surrogacy
agreements, including New York. However, the current ban on surrogacy
contracts contained in Article 8 of the Domestic Relations Law did not
anticipate IVF technology and the ability of gestational surrogates to
be implanted with a fertilized donor egg. The Statute is wrong because
of its outdated reference to surrogacy and medical technology and

because it denies intended parents what may be their only means of
procreating a child of their own genetic stock.

Many states - and most recently the State of California in 2012 - have
passed legislation to strengthen and improve the rights of those enter-
ing into valid commercial gestational surrogacy arrangements. It is time
for the State of New York to do the same - and the first step is to
repeal the ban found in Article 8 of the Domestic Relations Law.



EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K


                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 18, 2013

Introduced  by  Sen. HOYLMAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Judiciary

AN ACT to repeal article 8 of the domestic relations  law,  relating  to
  the prohibition of surrogate parenting contracts


  Section 1. Article 8 of the domestic relations law is REPEALED.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.


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