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17th Feb 2015

Ireland’s first surrogacy laws and parental rights to be discussed by Cabinet

It is hoped the Bill will clarify the law for potential parents

Ireland’s first ever surrogacy laws and parental rights for non traditional families will be among the topics discussed today by Cabinet.

The draft Bill on Surrogacy, Assisted Human Reproduction and Associated Research is designed to regulate surrogacy as well as sperm, egg and embryo donation in line with recent Supreme Court decisions, clarifying the law for potential parents.

Minister for Health Leo Varadkar has included a provision that at least one of the people involved in a surrogacy agreement must be a genetic parent.

Appearing on RTÉ’s Claire Byrne Live on Monday, Leo Varadkar said commercial surrogacy, or “surrogacy for money” would be banned outright.

The Minister also said that the proposals “won’t allow what’s called ‘sex selection’, choosing the gender of your child, unless there’s a particular reason to do so around a disorder that is inherited only by a particular gender.”

Meanwhile the Children and Family Relationships Bill will be brought by Minister for Justice and Equality Frances Fitzgerald. The Bill covers custody rights and guardianship in different family settings and it will also allow couples and civil partners who have lived together for more than three years to adopt a child.