Is surrogacy allowed?

2017-06-28 06:02
Chris-Meri Lillie

Chris-Meri Lillie

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories


Because I am medically unable to give birth to a child, my husband and I have talked about the option of surrogacy.

We have discussed it with my sister and she has said she is willing to consider it. We have not yet spoken about costs or payment for her to do this, because we are not sure whe-ther surrogacy is allowed in South Africa. Is surrogacy an option we can consider?


Surrogacy is allowed in South Africa and is regulated by the Children’s Act.

The Children’s Act contains strict prerequisites which parents must satisfy before entering into a surrogacy agreement. These prerequisites include (but are not limited to):

  • the commissioning parent or parents are not able to give birth to a child and the condition is permanent and irreversible;
  • they must be competent to enter into a surrogacy agreement;
  • they must be suitable parents to take care of a child; and
  • they must accept the legal consequences of the agreement between them and the surrogate mother.

It is very important to note that no person may in connection with a surrogate motherhood agreement give or promise to give to any person, or receive from any person, a reward or compensation in cash or in-kind.

The only compensation or payment allowed is compensation for expenses that relate directly to the artificial fertilisation and pregnancy of the surrogate mother, the birth of the child, confirmation of the surrogate motherhood agreement, loss of earnings suffered by the surrogate mother, or insurance to cover the surrogate mother for anything that may lead to death or disability brought about by the pregnancy.

The surrogate mother also has to tick certain boxes. She must, for example, have a documented history of at least one pregnancy and viable delivery, have one living child of her own, and it must be apparent that she is not using the surrogacy as a source of income.

No surrogacy in South Africa, even if the above requirements are met, will be valid without a valid surrogate motherhood agreement which is in writing, signed by all the parties thereto, and entered into in South Africa and confirmed by the High Court within whose area of jurisdiction the particular parents are domiciled or habitually resident.

The surrogate motherhood agreement will only be confirmed once all of the abovementioned restrictions and requirements as required by the Children’s Act have been met and the agreement includes adequate provisions for the contact, care, upbringing, general welfare and best interest of the child.

Before you consider surrogacy as an option, it is recommended that you consult a family law specialist to discuss the requirements for a valid surrogate motherhood agreement.

  • Chris-Meri Lillie, candidate attorney, Phatshoane Henney Attorneys.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.