U.S. Surrogacy Law By State

The following interactive map provides a summary of U.S. surrogacy laws by state. It is meant as a guideline only for your reference. The laws are also listed by state in alphabetical order below.

US Surrogacy Map

For more information on U.S. surrogacy law and how it might affect you as an intended parent, please contact us.


Surrogacy in the United States
(alphabetical by state)

In every case where surrogacy is permitted but there is neither a statute nor a ruling from the state’s highest court governing the process, the question of pre-birth orders will be determined on a county by county and even on a judge by judge basis. This greatly complicates the issuance of birth certificates in the name(s) of the intended parent(s) and not the name of the surrogate and, if she is married, her husband.

Alabama
The courts are generally favorable. However, statutory language exempts surrogacy from adoption laws and prohibitions on baby selling. In 1996, the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals gave implicit recognition to a surrogacy arrangement when it awarded custody of a child in a divorce case to the wife who had no biological relationship to the child.

Alaska
There is no law governing surrogacy. The courts generally are favorable. In 1989, the Alaska Supreme Court equated surrogacy with adoption.

Arizona
An Arizona statute forbids “surrogate parent contracts” whether they be traditional or gestational. It provides that in a surrogacy situation the surrogate is the legal mother of the child or children and, if she is married, her husband is the father. However, the Arizona Court of Appeals, a court of intermediate jurisdiction, ruled in 1994, that the parentage presumption was rebuttable as to the intended mother.

Arkansas
Arkansas law is highly favorable to surrogacy. There is a statute declaring surrogacy agreements valid. The statute details several types of parentage situations and clearly establishes rights in each situation. More than once, the Arkansas Supreme Court has ruled in favor of intended parents.

California
California law, as established in rulings of the California Supreme Court, is very favorable to surrogacy. In the notable cases of Calvert v. Johnson (1993) and Buzzanca v. Buzzanca (1998), California first established and then reinforced its position that intent governs in the determination of parentage in gestational surrogacy situations.

Colorado
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Connecticut
There is no legal objection to surrogacy arrangements. With regard to pre-birth orders, the Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that the State Office of Vital Statistics of the Connecticut  Department of Health must comply with such orders even when the intended parents have no biological relationship to the child(ren). 

Delaware
A 2013 law permits surrogacy (gestational) and details the process. Parentage filings are pre-birth with the final decree issued post-birth

District of Columbia
The District of Columbia forbids surrogacy. Those who violate the statute may be fined up to $10,000, given a prison sentence of up to one year, or both.

Florida
Florida statutes permit both traditional and gestational surrogacy. Traditional surrogacy arrangements, known as “pre-planned adoption agreements,” are linked to the state adoption statute. Gestational surrogacy agreements are permitted only between legally married couples.

Georgia
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Hawaii
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.   

Idaho
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Illinois
Illinois has a statute highly favorable to gestational surrogacy which governs the process from contract formation to the issuance of birth certificates. It applies to single parents who have furnished their own gametes or heterosexual couples where at least one person has furnished his or her own gametes.

Indiana
Under Indiana law, surrogacy contracts are “void and unenforceable.” Nevertheless, a few judges will grant pre-birth orders.

Iowa
The courts are generally favorable. Although Iowa has no surrogacy statute, the Iowa Code exempts a “surrogate mother arrangement” from criminal provisions regarding the sale or purchase of human beings.

Kansas
There is no law governing surrogacy but two opinions of the Attorney General argued that surrogacy contracts are void as against public policy.

Kentucky
There is no law governing surrogacy. The Kentucky Supreme Court has indicated that surrogacy contracts are voidable by a party to the arrangement. 

Louisiana
A Louisiana statute declares traditional surrogacy agreements to be void, unenforceable, and contrary to public policy. The statute does not address gestational surrogacy. However, many courts are not gestational surrogacy friendly. 

Maine
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Maryland
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable. However, an Attorney General’s opinion from 2000 argued that compensated surrogacy contracts are illegal but did not oppose post-birth adoptions indicating that the judge would have to consider the best interests of the child(ren).

Massachusetts
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Michigan
Michigan law forbids surrogacy. Individuals who enter into surrogacy arrangements may be fined up to $50,000 and imprisoned for up to five years.

Minnesota
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Mississippi
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Missouri
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Montana
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Nebraska
Under Nebraska law “[a] surrogate parenthood contract entered into shall be void and unenforceable.” This provision applies to compensated surrogacy agreements in which the surrogate “is compensated for bearing a child of a man who is not her husband.” 

Nevada
Gestational surrogacy agreements are permitted only between legally married (heterosexual) couples.

New Hampshire
New Hampshire law permits married heterosexual couples to become intended parents in traditional or gestational surrogacy arrangements where one partner has furnished a gamete. The statute does not appear to sanction gestational surrogacy arrangements in which a donor egg was used.   

New Jersey
New Jersey forbids traditional surrogacy but is friendly toward gestational surrogacy, remunerated or compassionate. Although the Attorney General opposes the granting of pre-birth orders in gestational surrogacy cases involving an egg donor, the courts frequently issue such orders anyway.   

New Mexico
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

New York
New York forbids surrogacy. Anyone who enters into a surrogacy arrangement may be fined up to $10,000. Those who facilitate surrogacy arrangements, e.g. lawyers and agencies, are fined in the first instance and, for a second offense, are guilty of a felony.

North Carolina
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

North Dakota
North Dakota law forbids traditional surrogacy but permits gestational surrogacy.

Ohio
The Ohio courts are deeply divided over the status of surrogacy. Accordingly, some judges are loath to grant pre-birth orders.

Oklahoma
Oklahoma has no law on surrogacy. An Attorney-General’s opinion from 1983 that pre-dated the rise of gestational surrogacy declared that compensated surrogacy contracts violated the state’s statutory prohibition on child trafficking.

Oregon
The courts are generally surrogacy friendly and they will issue declarations of paternity.

Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania has no law governing surrogacy. Some more conservative judges will not grant pre-birth orders. The Pennsylvania adoption statute provides for the post-birth adoption of a child born through surrogacy in the county of the intended parents’ domicile.

Rhode Island
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

South Carolina
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

South Dakota
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Tennessee
Tennessee has a statute that “expressly authorize(s) the surrogate birth process.” It defines surrogacy as comprising two situations: 1) gestational surrogacy where both intended parents furnish the gametes and 2) gestational surrogacy where the intended father furnishes the sperm and the surrogate relinquishes the child to him and his wife.   

Texas
Texas permits surrogacy but has a complicated statute requiring judicial approval of contracts in advance. The provisions are so unwieldy that a group of surrogates petitioned the state legislature to have the law amended or repealed.

Utah
Utah has a statute permitting gestational surrogacy. It forbids traditional surrogacy and also does not allow the surrogate’s husband to act as the sperm donor. At least one intended parent must have furnished (a) gamete(s).

Vermont
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.

Virginia
Virginia permits surrogacy but has a statute so complicated that the common practice for Virginia births is to file an action post-birth for amendment of the birth certificate.

Washington
Washington statutes permit uncompensated surrogacy arrangements but declare compensated ones void and unenforceable. Those involved in the latter are guilty of a gross misdemeanor. 

West Virginia
The courts are generally favorable. A statute prohibiting human trafficking exempts fees and expenses in surrogacy arrangements.

Wisconsin
The courts are generally favorable. A statute governing the collection of vital statistics specifically directs the responsible authorities to place the names of the intended parents on the birth certificate once a court determines parental rights.

Wyoming
There is no law governing surrogacy but the courts are generally favorable.