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Family Law 

Considering Adoption, Surrogacy or 3 Parent IVF? How to get legal recognition of your family

By Julie Bligh

The law often struggles to keep pace with developments in science and technology.  How can defamation laws deal with the internet?  How do we deal with international cyber fraud? And how can family law keep pace with medical developments to have a child?

There are many ways for people to have children.  A senate committee has recently considered “three parents” IVF.  Australia may become the second country in the world, after the UK, to legalise this form of IVF.  If a woman has a genetic risk for mitochondrial disease, it will enable her and her partner to conceive a child without that genetic risk. 

The mother’s egg, a donor’s egg and the father’s sperm create a baby who does not carry the genetic risk of this devastating disease.  It provides hope to people with a family history of mitochondrial disease.  With new reproductive technology comes consideration of ethical and legal questions, currently being considered in Australia. 

Sometimes the law does not keep up with technology and social change.  Our family law team have been able to assist parents to obtain parenting orders from the family court that reflect the relationship of parents with children who were not born to them in the usual way. 

People adopting children, or whose children may have been carried by surrogates may need to consider obtaining parenting orders from the court.  If you are such a parent, or are thinking of starting a family in such a way, we can offer guidance about current state of the law and the pathway to getting legal recognition of your family. 

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