AP NEWS

NY governor says he’ll try again to legalize paid surrogacy

December 31, 2019 GMT

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Prospective parents in New York could enter into paid surrogacy contracts under a proposal that the governor says he’ll try to pass again in 2020.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday he will submit legislation to legalize gestational surrogacy as part of his 2020 State of the State agenda. Gestational surrogacy allows people to conceive a child who would be carried by a surrogate. New York is one of a few states that explicitly bans paid surrogacy contracts.

A similar bill was before the Legislature this year in New York; it passed the Senate but never came up for a vote in the Assembly.

That bill would have permitted and regulated such contracts and imposed rules intended to protect surrogates, future parents and babies. The New York State Catholic Conference had argued that surrogacy contracts have been used to exploit surrogates around the world.

The Democratic governor had called the legislation one of his top priorities for this year’s legislative session. He’s said the state’s ban on surrogacy contracts hits same-sex couples especially hard — something he calls odd given the state’s early approval of same-sex marriage.

“New York’s surrogacy ban is based in fear not love, and it’s past time we updated our antiquated laws to help LGBTQ couples and people struggling with fertility use commonplace reproductive technology to start families,” Cuomo said.

Cuomo said the 2020 legislation will include a Surrogates’ Bill of Rights that will ensure surrogates have the right to terminate or continue a pregnancy.

He says the bill would also create legal protections for parents of children conceived by egg donation or artificial insemination. Cuomo also wants to make it easier and less costly for individuals to adopt their partner’s biological child.