The Labor Government has passed new surrogacy laws which will establish a legal framework to regulate domestic surrogacy in the Northern Territory for the first time and ban surrogate mothers making profits.
The NT was the last jurisdiction in Australia without surrogacy laws.
Health Minister Natasha Fyles said the new laws would provide “legal clarity to Territorians entering into a surrogacy agreement and ensure that a child born from such an agreement has the same legal status and rights than any other child.”
“It also means that people no longer need to leave the territory to access surrogacy in other Australian jurisdictions or overseas,” she said.
The new laws aim to protect both the client and the surrogate from exploitation, ensuring surrogates will have equal rights to manage their pregnancy and childbirth, Ms Fyles said.
The bill, before being enacted, followed extensive background work, research and public consultation, the government said.
“We know that not all families can follow the same path to parenthood – for those where surrogacy is the best option, this bill provides a pathway and a framework,” Ms Fyles said.
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