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Law of Surrogacy in Michigan


Surrogacy in Michigan is one of the common questions that we get asked a lot. Here at Haque Legal, we answer questions about this specific topic.

To begin, let us talk about the law of surrogacy in Michigan.

What is the surrogacy law in Michigan?

Act 199 of 1988 is known as the Surrogate Parenting Act in Michigan. It covers Sections 722.851 to 722.863.

Important Terms to Remember

There are many different terms to remember relating to surrogacy in Michigan. It is embodied in Section 722.853 Definitions.

  •  “Compensation” means a payment of money, objects, services, or anything else having monetary value except payment of expenses incurred as a result of the pregnancy and the actual medical expenses of a surrogate mother or surrogate carrier.
  •  “Developmental disability” means that term as defined in the mental health code, Act No. 258 of the Public Acts of 1974, being sections 330.1001 to 330.2106 of the Michigan Compiled Laws.
  • “Mental illness” means that term as defined in the mental health code, Act No. 258 of the Public Acts of 1974.
  • “Mentally retarded” means that term as defined in the mental health code, Act No. 258 of the Public Acts of 1974.
  • “Participating party” means a biological mother, biological father, surrogate carrier, or the spouse of a biological mother, biological father, or surrogate carrier, if any.
  • “Surrogate carrier” means the female in whom an embryo is implanted in a surrogate gestation procedure.
  • “Surrogate gestation” means the implantation in a female of an embryo not genetically related to that female and subsequent gestation of a child by that female.
  • “Surrogate mother” means a female who is naturally or artificially inseminated and who subsequently gestates a child conceived through the insemination under a surrogate parentage contract.
  •  “Surrogate parentage contract” means a contract, agreement, or arrangement in which a female agrees to conceive a child through natural or artificial insemination, or in which a female agrees to surrogate gestation, and to voluntarily relinquish her parental or custodial rights to the child. It is presumed that a contract, agreement, or arrangement in which a female agrees to conceive a child through natural or artificial insemination by a person other than her husband, or in which a female agrees to surrogate gestation, includes a provision, whether or not express, that the female will relinquish her parental or custodial rights to the child.

What is the specific provision that prohibits surrogacy in Michigan?

Section 722.855 Surrogate parentage contract as void and unenforceable provides the following: “A surrogate parentage contract is void and unenforceable as contrary to public policy.”

What is the specific provision that prohibits surrogacy in Michigan and turns it into a felony?

Section 722.857 Surrogate parentage contract prohibited; surrogate parentage contract as felony; penalty defines surrogacy as a felony and the prohibition:

  • A person shall not enter into, induce, arrange, procure, or otherwise assist in the formation of a surrogate parentage contract under which an unemancipated minor female or a female diagnosed as being mentally retarded or as having a mental illness or developmental disability is the surrogate mother or surrogate carrier.
  • A person other than an unemancipated minor female or a female diagnosed as being mentally retarded or as having a mental illness or developmental disability who enters into, induces, arranges, procures, or otherwise assists in the formation of a contract described in subsection (1) is guilty of a felony punishable by a fine of not more than $50,000.00 or imprisonment for not more than 5 years, or both.

What is the specific provision that prohibits compensation in surrogacy in Michigan and turns it into a felony?

Sections 722.859 Surrogate parentage contract for compensation prohibited; surrogate parentage contract for compensation as misdemeanor or felony; penalty, provides the following:

  • A person shall not enter into, induce, arrange, procure, or otherwise assist in the formation of a surrogate parentage contract for compensation.
  • A participating party other than an unemancipated minor female or a female diagnosed as being mentally retarded or as having a mental illness or developmental disability who knowingly enters into a surrogate parentage contract for compensation is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $10,000.00 or imprisonment for not more than 1 year, or both.
  • A person other than a participating party who induces, arranges, procures, or otherwise assists in the formation of a surrogate parentage contract for compensation is guilty of a felony punishable by a fine of not more than $50,000.00 or imprisonment for not more than 5 years, or both.

Who gets custody of the child?

Section 722.861 Custody of child provides the following: If a child is born to a surrogate mother or surrogate carrier under a surrogate parentage contract, and there is a dispute between the parties concerning custody of the child, the party having physical custody of the child may retain physical custody of the child until the circuit court orders otherwise. The circuit court shall award legal custody of the child based on a determination of the best interests of the child. 

In the coming parts of this article series, we will discuss more surrogacy in Michigan.

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Disclaimer

The article that you have read is based on general applications of the law. It is not legal advice and it is not to be construed as any legal consultation with the firm. No client-attorney relationship is created when you read the articles we have provided.

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