Florida surrogacy attorney, Marla Neufeld, contributed to an article recently published in the New York Law Journal, titled, It's About Time...Now What? Moving Forward with New York's Model Commercial Surrogacy Law. The article highlights the new laws in New York that govern surrogacy, egg donation, step parent adoption, and regulation over surrogacy agencies. Ms. Neufeld was joined in the article by New York lawyers, BriAnne Copp and Arthur Ettinger. Effective February 15, 2021, the state of New York has officially legalized commercial gestational surrogacy via the Child Parent Security Act (“CPSA”). With "gestational surrogacy", the surrogate has no genetic connection to the child. This change in the law does not pertain to "traditional surrogacy" also referred to as “genetic surrogacy”, where the surrogate's eggs are used for conception. For many decades in New York, only altruistic surrogacy was permissible where the surrogate could only be reimbursed for her out of pocket expenses relating to the surrogacy. She could not receive any other payments for participating in a surrogacy matter otherwise the agreement would be deemed void and unenforceable with other precarious legal repercussions. This limited intended parent(s)' who reside in New York the ability to pursue surrogacy in their home state. New York intended parents were then forced to locate surrogates and perform embryo transfers in other states where surrogacy was permissible which added to the costs of the process due to added travel expenses. The purpose of the new surrogacy legal framework in New York pursuant to Section 581-101 of the CPSA is as follows:
The purpose of this article is to legally establish a child's relationship to his or her parents where the child is conceived through assisted reproduction except for children born to a person acting as surrogate who contributed the egg used in conception. This article and all governmental measures adopted pursuant thereto should comply with existing laws on reproductive health and bodily integrity.The recent changes to the CPSA establishes rules and guidelines for surrogacy matters in the state of New York such as creating a Surrogates’ Bill of Rights (a copy of which must be provided to the gestational surrogate), establishes legal protections for the intended parents, sets criteria required in the parties surrogacy agreement, and revises New York laws to eliminate previous barriers involved in the second parent adoption process.