Altruistic surrogacy has been legal in Victoria for many years. However, it took until 2022 for a single man to have a child through surrogacy.
Overcoming the challenges of surrogacy when you are male
While navigating the surrogacy process and overcoming the various obstacles can be challenging, Shaun Resnik’s story shows that it is possible.
Finding a surrogate can be difficult for anyone embarking on the surrogacy journey – particularly here in Australia where paid surrogacy is not allowed.
For men embarking on the process alone, or as a couple, there is the added complexity of not just finding a surrogate, but also an egg donor (the law prevents the surrogate’s eggs being used here) along with the challenges of navigating the legal system, gaining approval and reaching agreement on the terms of the surrogacy. It took Shaun three years.
The strict regulations and legal requirements that surround surrogacy here in Australia mean that it is not uncommon for singles or couples to engage a surrogate in another country where the rules are more relaxed or paid surrogacy is allowed.
What are the requirements for surrogacy in Victoria?
Surrogacy legislation varies from state to state, but in Victoria surrogacy is available to men and women, providing:
- You are infertile, unable to carry or birth a baby, or pregnancy poses a medical risk to yourself.
- The surrogate is 25 years old or older.
- The surrogate has previously been pregnant and given birth.
- The surrogate does not use her eggs.
- You and the surrogate receive both counselling and legal advice.
- The surrogate does not receive payment for carrying the baby, apart from reasonable expenses incurred such as medical expenses, counselling sessions and travel expenses.
Gaining approval to have a child through surrogacy
Anyone who wants to have a child through surrogacy must gain approval from the Patient Review Panel to ensure they are a suitable parent. The panel assesses applications based on a variety of factors, including your:
- Financial capacity to raise a child.
- Ability to provide a stable environment to raise a child in.
- Psychological and physical fitness.
It also requires you to have:
- Undergone counselling.
- Obtained legal advice from a lawyer
Navigating the legal side of surrogacy
This recent article provides information about surrogacy requirements and the legal process.