Surrogacy Law in Ohio
Ohio Surrogacy Law: Types of Surrogacy
In Ohio, gestational surrogacy is supported by J.F.v.D.B.,879N.E.2d740 (2007), in which the Ohio Supreme Court held that gestational carrier agreements are not prohibited by public policy.
Traditional (genetic) surrogacy is not addressed by Ohio statutory or published case law. The enforceability of individual traditional surrogacy arrangements varies by judge and circumstances and could be risky.
Are There Surrogate Requirements in Ohio?
No specific legal requirements exist to serve as a gestational surrogate in the state of Ohio.
Does Ohio Surrogacy Law Allow for Pre-Birth Orders?
Parentage Orders: Depending on the court/judge, it is possible to obtain a pre and/or post birth order in Ohio.
The conditions under which intended parents could be declared legal parents with a pre-birth order if at least one parent is genetically related to the child are listed below:
Married heterosexual couples, using their own egg and own sperm
Unmarried heterosexual couples, using their own egg and own sperm
Married heterosexual couples, using a sperm or egg donor
Single parents using an egg or sperm donor
Married same sex couples, using an egg or sperm donor
For intended parents who are in no way related to the resulting child, the conditions under which intended parents could be declared legal parents with a pre-birth order are listed below:
Married heterosexual couples
Married same sex couples
Whose names go on the birth certificate in Ohio?
Parents will be listed on the birth certificate as they wish; “mother,” “father,” or “parent” are all options.
An international same-sex male couple can either obtain a court order and resulting birth certificate naming one father and gestational surrogate (assuming her consent) as parents or a court order and resulting birth certificate naming both men as fathers. It is also possible to obtain a pre-birth order that results in a birth certificate naming one father and gestational surrogate (assuming her consent) as parents and then a post-birth order naming the second father as parent, thereby adding his name and removing the gestational surrogate’s name from the birth certificate. As with many other elements of the process it depends on the judge and experienced Ohio legal counsel should be used.
Surrogacy Conditions for Same-Sex Couples in Ohio
Ohio is surrogacy friendly, whether married couples are same-sex or heterosexual.
Are There Options for Unmarried Intended Parents in the state of Ohio?
Depends on the court/judge, although it could be risky and additional legal work may be advisable.
Egg Donation Law
There is no Ohio statute on egg donation. The Ohio statue on sperm donation applies only to “non-spousal artificial insemination for the purpose of impregnating a woman so that she can bear a child that she intends to raise as her own” and not to surrogacy. Similarly, the Ohio statute on embryo donation “deals with embryo donation for the purpose of impregnating a woman so that she can bear a child that she intends to raise as her child.” Elsewhere, case law is only controlling to specific counties, or is otherwise non-comprehensive. Constitutional arguments may also be made. Experienced Fertility Law counsel in Ohio can assist with drafting egg, sperm, and embryo donation agreements within this context.
State law information verified by the following (ART) Assisted Reproductive Law attorney licensed in Ohio*
Essig & Evans, LLP
Rachel Loftspring, Partner
4540 Cooper Rd, Suite 304
Cincinnati, OH 45242-5649