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Sleepwalking through the Minefield: Legal and Ethical Issues in Surrogacy

The Honourable Chief Justice John Pascoe

(2018) 30 SAcLJ 455

This article will briefly explain the different types of surrogacy and regulatory approaches taken by states before examining some of the ethical and legal concerns arising out of surrogacy. It explores the significant human rights abuses that have affected surrogate mothers and the resulting children in the context of international commercial surrogacy. Regulatory responses to these abuses and the willingness of commissioning parents to evade restriction have led to children been born stateless and without legal parents. Thus, in regulating surrogacy, states face the dilemma that what is in the best interests of children at a policy level may clash with the best interests of the individual child already born through surrogacy.