Surrogacy / ECHR: Recognition of foreign birth certificates denied


In its December 12, 2019 report, the European Court of Human Rights upheld the French courts’ refusal to register the entire foreign birth certificate for a surrogacy case, mentioning the “intended mother” was an appropriate measure.

Two surrogacy cases were presented before the European judges: a couple requesting that a birth certificate for their surrogate child born in Florida in 2010 be acknowledged on the French registry, and that of a couple whose triplets were born in Ghana from surrogacy. The biological father was registered as the child’s father on the French birth certificate, but his wife is required to adopt the child. The applicants reposted that this was an “abstract, ideological, and soil-less cultural interpretation, which completely neglected the reality of the child’s best interests”.

To put things into perspective, the ECHR reiterated the fact that in France, it takes 4.1 months for a full adoption to be awarded, and 4.7 months for a simple adoption. Therefore this does not represent “an excessive burden for applicants to undertake adoption proceedings to reach this objective.” The Court concluded that this procedure did not violate Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights concerning a child’s privacy.



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