By now many Illinoisans are aware that, come January 1, 2016, family law in Illinois is getting a substantial makeover. “Legal custody” is one familiar legal principle that is being overhauled as part of the legislature’s expansive effort to have Illinois’s family and domestic relations law reflect twenty-first century realities. It remains to be seen, however, if the changes to how a court determines legal custody will benefit Illinois families or whether it will further complicate already-challenging custody determinations.
Gestational surrogacy describes the process in which a surrogate mother is implanted with an egg and sperm, or in some cases only sperm, of the intended parents. The surrogate mother then brings the baby to term, delivers the baby, and transfers parentage to the intended parents, usually in exchange for compensation from the intended parents. Illinois enacted the Gestational Surrogacy Act in 2005, which provides standardization and legal protection for all parties involved in a gestational surrogacy contract.