Edward Bennett appeared in an important international surrogacy case concerning the interrelationship between the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 and the Adoption and Children Act 2002

4th Apr 2024 | Cases

Re AB (A Child) [2024] EWHC 586 (Fam) concerned a child born through surrogacy in the USA. The parents sought to establish their child’s interest as beneficiary of family trusts in both Guernsey and England. As Guernsey law did not recognise the USA parentage order, the parents obtained a confirmatory adoption order in the USA. The adoption was automatically recognised as an overseas adoption in England. However, this posed a problem as the English trust, created before 1976, excluded adopted children. The parents therefore applied for a parental order. 

Edward, led by Dorothea Gartland KC at 4PB, instructed by Mills & Reeve, was junior counsel for the applicant parents, who were successful in persuading the President of the Family Division that a parental order could be made in favour of parents where a child has already been adopted by them. The Secretary of State for Education, who intervened in these proceedings, agreed with construction of the relevant statutory provisions which supported this position. 

Reported in Local Government Lawyer.

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