Integrity Legal

12th May 2010

Recently, the website announced that the Thai Cabinet has drafted proposed legislation for the enactment of laws that would tackle the difficult legal issues surrounding surrogate parents and reproductive rights. The following is quoted from

BANGKOK: — The Cabinet yesterday approved draft legislation for children born through the use of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART), deputy government spokesman Bhumin Leeteeraprasert said.

This law permits two kinds of surrogate pregnancy: the one that uses the egg and sperm of a married couple; or one that uses the egg or sperm of either a husband or a wife, paired with the sperm or egg of another person.

According to the draft law, the Juvenile and Family Court would be given the authority of judging paternity cases for such children and a committee would be set up to protect the children. It also stipulates that the surrogate mother should be married, and her husband should consent to another man’s sperm being used. The draft law also authorises the Medical Council to set the criteria, methods and financial conditions for the care of surrogate mothers before, during and after the pregnancy.

The draft law also covers the criteria for the donation of eggs or sperm, their storage and the use of ART. It also prohibits the use of the egg or sperm of donors who have died without leaving written consent.

It also lists punishment for unethical doctors and makes transitory provision for endorsing medical professionals to be responsible and provide ART services according to the Medical Council’s regulations.

It also covers a transitory provision to endorse the rights of those born through the use of ART before this law goes in effect provided a request is filed with the authorised court to declare a surrogate child as a legitimate offspring of a couple that resorted to ART.

In the United States, many of these issues come up in court proceedings as many of these issues are, at their root, constitutional questions in the USA. In Thailand, as technology progresses at an increasingly dizzying rate, these issues must be dealt with or else those who wish to enjoy the benefits of technological progress will be left in something of a legal “limbo” if an unforeseen problem should arise. It is also interesting to note that the proposed law would address the issue of those would die and leave their genetic material in the care of those who can store such items. This author applauds the Thai Cabinet for choosing to prohibit the use of such genetic material unless the person to whom it belongs bequeaths it to another person prior to their death in an instrument such as a Thai Will.

For further related information please see: Thailand Property Law or US Fiance Visa Thailand.

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