There is a thriving surrogacy community of intended parents and surrogates in Melbourne and surrounds, and regular catch ups and support available for people who have been through the process before.

Surrogacy is legal in Victoria, and every State in Australia. Victorian surrogacy arrangements are regulated by the Assisted Reproductive Treatment Act 2008. The law has recently been reviewed, and expected to be reformed soon. Read more about the Review and stay up to date with the law reform.

If you are new to surrogacy, you can read about how to find a surrogate, or how to become a surrogate yourself. You can also download the free Surrogacy Handbook which explains the processes and options.

You can also purchase my book, More Than Just a Baby: A Guide to Surrogacy for Intended Parents and Surrogates, the only guide to surrogacy in Australia.

The criteria for surrogacy in Victoria includes:

  • The intended parents must have a social or medical need for surrogacy. This includes same sex male couples, and opposite sex couples who cannot conceive or carry a baby themselves.
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  • The surrogate must be over 25 years of age.
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  • The surrogate must have had at least one child of her own.
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  • The arrangement must be altruistic. The intended parents must cover the surrogate’s out of pocket expenses in accordance with the law. Commercial surrogacy is illegal.
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  • The parties must have undergone counselling about the arrangement.
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  • The parties must have obtained legal advice about the arrangement.
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  • If the arrangement is a gestational surrogacy arrangement (ie. where the surrogate conceives with an embryo created with an egg from the Intended Mother or a donor) then the parties must seek approval from the Patient Review Panel prior to treatment.
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  • Traditional Surrogacy arrangements (where the surrogate conceives with her own egg) are legal, but cannot be facilitated by an IVF Clinic. This means the conception occurs via home insemination. Many clinics will declare that traditional surrogacy is illegal, which is not true.
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  • The treatment – specifically the embryo transfer – must take place in a Victorian registered ART provider. If the embryo transfer occurs outside Victoria, the intended parents may not be able to obtain a Parentage Order after the baby is born.
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  • Written surrogacy agreements are not a requirement in Victoria, but this is likely to change with the upcoming legislative reforms.

It is illegal to advertise for a surrogate in Victoria. It is not illegal for Victorian intended parents to engage in commercial surrogacy overseas.

Sarah is a surrogacy lawyer in Melbourne and has published a book, More Than Just a Baby: A Guide to Surrogacy for Intended Parents and Surrogates, the only guide to surrogacy in Australia.

You can find more information in the free Surrogacy Handbook, reading articles in the Blog, by listening to more episodes of the Podcast. You can also book in for a consult with me below.

Find out more about Surrogacy Parentage Order applications for Victorian surrogacy arrangements. Sarah offers an affordable DIY Parentage Order package to transfer parentage from the birth parents to the intended parents.

Sarah can assist with surrogacy arrangements across all States, including Victoria and cross-border arrangements. You can contact me here. All consults are conducted over Zoom and email. You can book in for a consult with me below, and check out the legal services I provide.

Hi! I’m Sarah Jefford (she/her). I’m a family creation lawyer, practising in surrogacy and donor conception arrangements. I’m an IVF Mum, an egg donor and a traditional surrogate, and I delivered a baby for her Dads in 2018.

I advocate for positive, best practice surrogacy arrangements within Australia, and provide support and education to help intended parents make informed decisions when pursuing overseas surrogacy.

more than just a baby

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