Adoption, IVF and Surrogacy


Adoption is a process that provides individuals and partners including same-sex couples the opportunity to become legal parents to a child who is not biologically related to them. Adoption in essence transfers parental rights and responsibilities to the adoptive parents.

The adoption process in NSW is governed by the Adoption Act 2000 (The Act). The Act states that to adopt you must meet the following criteria:

  1. You must be a NSW resident;
  2. You must be 21 years of age or older;
  3. You must be at least 18 years older than the child you are planning to adopt; and
  4. You must have the requisite parenting ability to care for a child and be considered a person of good character.

The adoption process is considerably technical. At Barker Evans, our solicitors can guide you through the complicated adoption process.

In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) / Donor Agreements

For couples or individuals struggling to conceive, or those in same sex relationships, In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) is used. Put simply, IVF is a reproductive technology that assists individuals and couples struggling with infertility, or those who choose to conceive a child via artificial insemination. This process involves combining an egg and sperm outside the body in a laboratory dish, and once fertilization occurs, the resulting embryo is transferred to the uterus for implantation.

IVF can be fraught with legal complexities and may require a properly drafted donor agreement. Consideration will need to be given in relation to the parental rights of the parties involved, and the consequences of engaging with individuals overseas. As such, it is crucial for individuals and couples considering IVF and donor eggs or donor sperm, to seek legal guidance to navigate the complex legal landscape.

At Barker Evans, our solicitors are experts in drafting donor agreements and can provide expert advice informing you of the legal considerations of artificial conception procedures such as IVF.


Surrogacy is an arrangement in which a woman carries and gives birth to a child on behalf of another individual or couple and is legislated under the Surrogacy Act 2010 NSW.  Such an arrangement often involves unforeseen legal complexities. For example, in NSW, commercial surrogacy is illegal. This means that you cannot pay your surrogate or give them any other material benefit or advantage above any reasonable medical costs associated with carrying out the pregnancy.

There are also other legal considerations such as parenting rights and arrangements and preparing surrogacy agreements. As such it is crucial for intended parents and surrogates to consult with legal professionals experienced in surrogacy laws to navigate this complex legal terrain successfully.

Should you wish to talk to one of our solicitors about any of the above, please do not hesitate to contact us on info@barkerevans.com.au or call us on (02) 8379 1892.