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Chicago Divorce Lawyer > Chicago Assistive Reproduction Technology Lawyer

Chicago Assistive Reproduction Technology Lawyer (ART)

Individuals and couples today have many options when it comes to conceiving a child. For single parents, same-sex couples, or couples where one partner is infertile, medical advancements make it possible to have a child who is genetically related to one or both partners in ways that were not available to the previous generation. In some of these areas, however, the law has not always kept up with the pace of medical technology. As you consider embarking on different paths toward reproduction, it’s vital to consider the legal implications that may be involved. A skilled and knowledgeable family law attorney at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC can help you understand the legal issues and successfully navigate them to avoid any unintended consequences or unwanted legal complications. Helping families grow in all sorts of ways is one of our favorite things to do at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC. Call our experienced Chicago assisted reproductive technology lawyers today for thoughtful advice, professional assistance and skilled representation.


In vitro fertilization, or IVF, is a form of assisted reproduction in which the sperm and egg are combined outside the woman’s body, and the fertilized egg is then implanted into the woman’s uterus for gestation, pregnancy and birth. This process is not always successful the first time around, and fertilization doctors will typically harvest several of the woman’s eggs and create dozens of embryos (fertilized eggs) for multiple procedures. Several embryos might be implanted at one time, while others are cryogenically frozen in case they might be needed for a subsequent procedure.

If a couple ends up getting divorced, what happens to those stored embryos? Can the wife later have the embryos implanted post-divorce? Can the husband acquire possession of any fertilized eggs for later use? Who is the legal father (and mother) of any children later born? These are complex legal questions that can be complicated to sort out and often wind up in court. In the best-case scenario, the couple will figure out the answers to these questions together before they begin the IVF process. With a signed agreement in place, courts will look to principles of contract law to give that agreement proper legal effect.

The skilled ART family lawyers at Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC provide expert advice and assistance to help you understand and answer these legal questions and draft an agreement that respects your rights and meets your needs. Our attorneys are available to negotiate, draft or review an agreement as well as litigate any disputes that may later arise.

Gestational Surrogacy

Gestational surrogacy involves using IVF for impregnation, although the developing child is carried by a third party who is not genetically related to the baby (not the egg donor). In prior years, expectant parents had to rely on unenforceable compassionate surrogacy agreements, hoping that the carrier does not change her mind and decide to keep the baby for herself. These situations led to costly and emotional legal disputes. Even in the best case where the carrier turned over the baby, the parents still faced an uncertain post-birth adoption process.

Today gestational surrogacy agreements are regularly interpreted and enforced by the courts. To be effective, they still must be carefully drafted by a knowledgeable lawyer. Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC can help you negotiate, draft and review a gestational surrogacy agreement that protects your rights and meets your needs whether you are the parent or the carrier. We can also advise and assist parents in the special procedures required to establish parentage and get the birth certificate filled out correctly without the need to go to court.

The state of Illinois has adopted a law, the Gestational Surrogacy Act, to provide a consistent set of rules to protect all parties to a gestational surrogacy agreement and confirm the child’s legal status as well as parental rights of both mother and father. The law defines who can be a surrogate and an intended parent and describes the ins and outs required to create an enforceable contract between the surrogate and the intended parents.

Contact Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC Today

Illinois law provides more legal guidance for gestational surrogacy than it does for IVF, even though IVF is a much more popular and widely-used form of ART than surrogacy. Whichever process you are using, it’s critical to avoid mistakes in legal matters. There is simply too much at stake to get the wrong outcome, and the consequences are painful enough without having to take the matter to court. Let Birnbaum Gelfman Sharma & Arnoux, LLC help you understand and deal with the legal issues to guide you through a successful ART process. Call our experienced Chicago assisted reproductive technology lawyers today.

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