In Switzerland, there are over a thousand children who were born abroad through surrogacy. They were born into a legal grey area, as surrogacy is prohibited in Switzerland. Many couples who wish to have children resort to countries where the practice is allowed, which leads to legal and ethical questions in Switzerland.
This was also the case with the family B.: The couple fulfilled their wish to have a child in the Republic of Georgia, where surrogacy is permitted. The girl was born with the help of a sperm donation from the intended father and an anonymous egg donation. The authorities of the canton of Aargau refused to recognise the couple as the girl’s parents. Instead, they registered the Georgian surrogate as the sole parent, which meant the girl was given her surname.
The couple and the Georgian surrogate appealed to the Aargau High Court, which partially approved the appeal and ordered the registration of the genetic father as the legal parent. However, the intended mother, who is not genetically related to the girl, was still not recognised as the legal mother. Both the couple and the Federal Office of Justice then appealed to the Federal Supreme Court, where the case is still pending.
This case is an example of how many legal questions arise in dealing with surrogacy in Switzerland.Back