Devry Smith Frank LLP (DSF) is a fertility law practice group based in Toronto, Ontario specializing in all aspects of reproductive technology law. We are committed to helping more couples get the rights they deserve and the families they have always wanted.
Fertility law in Toronto includes surrogacy agreements, sperm and egg donor agreements and the establishment of legal parentage. It is a very specific and rewarding area of law which is not widely known in Canada. This is largely due to a misbelief that surrogacy is not legal in Canada. This misconception is borne out of the fact that, while legal, surrogacy and egg/sperm donation have a multitude of restrictions.
This area of law is regulated in Canada by the Federal Assisted Human Reproduction Act (the “Federal Act”). It is also subject to Provincial legislation such as the Children’s Law Reform Act, as amended (“CLRA”), in Ontario. Navigating and interpreting these laws can be difficult if not impossible for non-legal professional making legal representation crucial for achieving the results you want.
The restrictions to surrogacy include the financial compensation that a surrogate can receive. Contrary to some popular misconceptions, a surrogate will not receive much in the way of compensation outside of having pregnancy expenses paid. Paying a surrogate for unapproved expenses could result in legal issues.
This is just one of the many concerns and restrictions that make it necessary for couples and surrogates to have qualified legal representation. The DSF team of experienced fertility lawyers can help tailor agreements to suit your needs and the needs of the surrogate or egg/sperm donor.
The possibility of building a family through the help of surrogacy and/or donation can cause a great deal of anxiety and frustration as you struggle through all the hurdles to this. As a parent of three children born through surrogacy, our fertility law Lead, Marc Kemerer understands this well. He has the legal and personal experience to put you at ease and on the road to a family.
Surrogacy Agreements – the contract between a surrogate and the Intended Parent(s).
Egg Donor Agreements – Egg donations are critical to many individuals or couples, gay and straight, who are not able to produce children in the “traditional” way. They have important legal considerations, particularly around the area of future parental responsibility and contact, if any, between the child and the egg donor. You can learn more about egg donation in Canada here.
Sperm Donor Agreements – Similarly sperm donations are necessary for many Intended Parents and have significant implications for those parents and the child(ren). You can learn more about sperm donation in Canada here.
Embryo Donation Agreements – Embryo donations are also legal in Canada but individuals who are in possession of embryos, such as those who have completed their family building, cannot profit from this. Such parents or recipients are strongly encouraged to seek legal advice and enter into an embryo donation agreement prior to donating any reproductive materials.
Registration of Birth/Declarations of Parentage – This is the primary method of recognizing legal parentage in this area of law in Canada, though its availability is subject to which jurisdiction you live in. You can learn more about declarations of parentage by referring to our Frequently Asked Questions page here.
Second-Parent Adoptions – This is one of the ways in which an intended parent can be recognized as the legal parent of a child created through third-party reproduction. You can learn more about second-parent adoptions by referring to our Frequently Asked Questions page here.
General Advice and Advocacy – When you use the services of an experienced fertility law lawyer, you are gaining a skilled professional who can help guide you through the entire family building process. A lawyer who will advocate for your interests in a collaborative but assertive manner. With the assistance of your experienced fertility law lawyer, you can avoid unnecessary obstacles and headaches from pre-conception to parenthood. We can work with you every step of the way and are excited to help you plan your family!
Planning for and building your family is an important milestone in your life. Our experienced fertility law lawyers have assisted many intended parents, surrogates and donors over the years with this amazing journey. As this part of the process can be expensive, we offer very competitive legal rates while maintaining a level of client service and expertise that is second to none.
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B.A. (Hons.), M.Sc., LL.B.