Starting a Family in a Same-Sex Relationship; what are your options?

October 16th 2018

Deciding when is the best time for you and your partner to start a family can be difficult and for same-sex couples there is the additional question of how to start to your family.

There are numerous options which you may wish to consider including:

  • Adoption
  • Surrogacy
  • Sperm Donation
  • Co-Parenting

However you decide to start our family you may need to consider the following:

The legal differences in parental status

It is important that when starting your family you contemplate how you and your partner or spouse shall be recognised as a parent and have parental responsibility for that child.

For example, if you are using a sperm donor the method used to conceive that child will have an impact on parental status.  If you have a surrogacy arrangement a Court Order, called a Parental Order must be applied for after the child’s birth in order to end the legal status of the surrogate and ensure the intended parents become the child’s legal parents.

Practical Arrangements

The finances and logistics of child care are often a concern for parents to be. You may need to consider your career; including considering leave, flexible working requests and time off for appointments.

If you enter into a co-parenting arrangement careful discussion will need to take place about how each of you view their role in raising your child together and it may be helpful to draw up an agreement reflecting your intentions and plans. For example, what time the child shall spend with each of you. 

Protecting your family’s future is also a consideration and you may need to make provision for them through health insurance, life insurance and writing a will.

For more information on the issues raised in this article, please email Gemma Davison: or Patrick Mulcare: Alternatively, telephone our Family Law Department on 01295 204000.