A reproductive law attorney focuses on family building through third party assisted reproductive medical procedures. These procedures include using donor egg or donor sperm, both traditional or gestational surrogacy and embryo adoption. Whether you are a prospective parent or someone who wants to assist others in their quest to become a parent, you should be an informed patient.
This means that you understand the legal, medical and financial implications of the processes you are choosing to partake in. This is often an emotionally fraught and complicated time; however, the benefits can be overwhelmingly positive and life changing. The law offices of Leslie Schreiber, P.A. focuses on transactional and litigation procedures related to reproductive law.
Prospective parents, donors and surrogates must hire qualified and experienced reproductive legal counsel. A typical family law attorney may not have the requisite experience to handle this unique area of the law. There are several resources available to assist you in your search for qualified legal counsel:
- The American Society for Reproductive Medicine legal professional group of LPG listing of reproductive attorneys at www.asrm.org.
- Resolve, the National Infertility Association, also has a membership roster of attorneys listed online at www.Resolve.org.
- The American Bar Association, Family Law Section, Reproductive Law Committee, has worldwide membership of reproductive attorneys at www.americanbar.org.
- Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproductive Law Attorneys at www.aarta.org.
One should also check with their state bar association to further research each attorneys’ credentials and complaint history.
Since the process of family building can be long, emotionally complex and complicated it is advisable to hire an attorney with whom you feel not only confident, but also comfortable. It is best to hire someone who knows the ins and outs of each procedure including psychological assessment requirements, insurance, escrow and finances. Relationships and ease of communication with doctors offices and their staff is essential to a streamlined process.
Gestational surrogacy, for example, can be mired in complexities from the beginning. If the prospective parents live in State A but the Surrogate lives in State B and she gives birth in State B, depending on the laws of each state, there may be no guarantee that parentage will be affirmed for recipient parent(s) since State B may not be surrogacy friendly. All the parties involved in this reproductive arrangement may reside in different states or even internationally; therefore, before you commit to an attorney, you should ensure their licensure fits with your requirements.
Infertility is generally defined as a disease characterized by the failure to establish a clinical pregnancy after 12 months of regular, unprotected sexual intercourse or due to an impairment of a person’s capacity to reproduce either as an individual or with his/her partner. Medical intervention, therefore, may necessary in order to create the family you desire. If you are diagnosed with infertility, and seek alternative means of family formation, then you will probably need a lawyer to guide you through the process. Alternatively, you may fall within the category of the alternative family, either single or in a same sex relationship. This growing group of people, unlike the traditional heterosexual couple, requires unique legal representation in their family formation needs. Either way, whether you hire a fertility lawyer or reproductive lawyers, they are one in the same.
Leslie Schreiber, P.A. offers you a boutique and personal experience in order to ensure that all legal requirements for your family formation plans are properly executed. This may include:
– Drafting, negotiating or reviewing an egg or sperm donation agreement.
– Drafting or reviewing your gestational surrogate contract. A gestational surrogacy contract is required prior to an embryo transfer by fertility clinics and legal clearance before medical procedures is part of that process. Once the child is born, then affirmation of your parental rights with the necessary documents and court hearings are required by most state statutes governing surrogacy. Leslie Schreiber will provide a boutique and personal experience advise you about your rights and responsibilities under any surrogate arrangements and help you decide if this is the right choice for you. We work alongside fertility doctors and their staff, mental health professionals, insurers and escrow agents to make sure your process is uncomplicated.
– Escrow accounts are a necessity for proper dissemination of funding for surrogate reimbursements, travel, insurance payments, medical costs and any other items that are part of the surrogacy process.
– If a pre-birth order is required, the fertility lawyer can ensure that the intended parent is declared the legal parent prior to the birth of the child.
Each client is unique with their own set of circumstances and needs. Therefore, no plan to family formation is ever the same and each experience needs to be tailored to your needs. Whether you choose to adopt, use or want to be a surrogate or donor, have particular financial issues, choose to be child-free, or have finally come to a place of infertility resolution, Leslie Schreiber can guide you through each step.