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Surrogacy & Adoption Lawyers in San Jose

Move Forward with Your Parenting Goals with Our Help.

Dad, mom, and two sons laughing

For many, the decision to have a child is one of the most life-changing and joy-giving experiences. Many individuals or couples pursue alternative options for having children, either because of personal reasons or because they are unable to have children naturally. These alternative options include surrogacy and adoption. Our San Jose surrogacy and adoption lawyers know how to safeguard your best interests as you pursue parental rights through these options.

Surrogacy & Adoption

Surrogacy is when a "surrogate” carries a child on behalf of another person or couple. This is done through intrauterine insemination (IUI) or in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Adoption is when a person or couple adopts a child who does not have parents with parental rights. Adoptive parents are given full parental rights.


Surrogacy uses fertilization methods to allow a “surrogate” to carry a child on behalf of another person or couple. In traditional surrogacy, a surrogate will act as the egg donor and receive the father’s sperm through a medical procedure called intrauterine insemination (IUI). In gestational surrogacy, a surrogate carries a child that she is not biologically related to. Instead, through a process called in vitro fertilization, an embryo is created in a lab using either or both the sperm and egg of the intended parents, and is then transferred to the surrogate’s uterus.

Before the surrogate process begins, the intended parents and the surrogate must sign a written, legal agreement known as a pre-birth order/judgment. This agreement states who the legal parents of the child are, and will be used to secure a court order that will enforce the parents’ rights once the child is born. In California, both married and unmarried couples may obtain rights as legal parents through surrogacy. Same-sex couples, married or unmarried, may also obtain these rights through surrogacy, as can a single parent.

It is important to have a family law attorney on your side as you pursue surrogacy to help ensure that your pre-birth agreement gains proper authorization and that it is properly enforced. Furthermore, disputes and disagreements can also arise between the surrogate mother and intended parents, which can result in complicated legal proceedings. Protect your parenting rights with skilled representation from our firm.


Any adult is legally permitted to adopt in California as long as he or she is 10 years older than the child. The law may make exceptions to this rule if the adoptive parent is a stepparent or relative. An additional rule is that if the child is 12 years or older, the child must give consent to be adopted.

California permits the following individuals to adopt:

  • Single adults
  • Married couples
  • LGBTQ individuals and couples
  • A married stepparent may adopt his or her spouse’s birth child.
  • An unmarried domestic partner may adopt his or her partner’s child.

Adoptive parents have the same parenting rights as biological parents. Likewise, when a couple with adopted children pursues a divorce, the child custody proceedings follow the same principles and laws.

To adopt a child, you will need to do the following:

  • Choose an adoption service provider and/or adoption attorney
  • Receive an approved home study investigation
  • Attend an interview with a social worker
  • For international adoptions, other rules and regulations may apply, depending on that country’s adoption laws.
  • Pay required fees and costs associated with the adoption

A San Jose adoption lawyer from our firm can help you navigate every step of the adoption process and work toward achieving your specific goals. Working with an attorney instead of an adoption agency can often afford you more flexibility and freedom. Our family law firm can also represent your best interests if disputes or complications arise regarding a more complicated adoption issue.

Do not face such an important issue as adoption without experienced legal advocacy. Call today to discuss your adoption plan or situation in a free consultation.

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