Ukraine: Surrogacy In Ukraine

Last Updated: 22 November 2012
Article by Alex Frishberg

With each year, surrogacy is increasingly more commonly used by couples to resolve problems arising from reproductive dysfunctions of different types, which lead to impossibility to conceive and give birth to a child in a natural way. It is not surprising that in today's day and age, progressive parents turn to science to help them build a family. Fortunately, Ukraine is a very liberal country in this regard. Below we analyze the current situation with surrogacy in Ukraine from both practical and legal viewpoints.

The first surrogate pregnancy took place in Ukraine in 1991, but detailed statistics reporting the number of children conceived artificially by surrogate mothers are practically unavailable. Clinics do not disclose this information, referring to medical confidentiality principle. The issues of legal support and protection of rights of children born to surrogate mothers are supervised by the Ukrainian Association of Reproductive Medicine. The largest medical institution for artificial insemination and additional medical care is the Kharkiv Center for Surrogate Motherhood. Similar centers of smaller scale are situated throughout the country, around 20 in number.

First, we must distinguish between two types of surrogate motherhood: the so-called"traditional" and extracorporeal insemination (in vitro). In the former case, the surrogate mother is a genetic mother of the child, insemination can be either natural or artificial, and the surrogate mother delivers the child to its genetic father and another woman, who lacks of some or all reproductive abilities. In contrast, extracorporeal insemination requires the use of genetic material of both future parents, insemination is carried out artificially, and the impregnated embryo is planted into the surrogate mother's body. This way, the surrogate mother will have no genetic relation to the child at all. Presently, only the second method is employed in Ukraine, and the following discussion will be based solely on it.

Immediately below we explore the legal background regulating the employment of artificial motherhood and related issues, such as rights and obligations of genetic parents, legal relations between the parents and the surrogate mother, as well as between the parents and the medical institution carrying out the procedure, defining the parental rights for the future child, and the right of all involved parties to confidentiality concerning the child's origin.

As a general rule, surrogate motherhood is legally permitted in Ukraine, and is commonly employed by foreign citizens. The founding legislative act in this sphere is the Family Code of Ukraine, which guarantees all citizens an unimpeded realization of their right to parenthood. In particular, Article 123 of the Code defines the principles according to which the State Bodies for Registration of Civil Status Acts decide who should be considered the child's parents in cases of artificial insemination and embryo implantation. Part 2 of the above Article clearly states that in case of embryo implantation into the body of another woman, the couple who provided the genetic material for the embryo is considered to be the child's parents. This means that surrogate mother has no legal claims against the lawful parents. Please note this is in sharp contrast with the laws of the Russian Federation and many other countries, which allow surrogate mother to keep the child after its birth, regardless of any previous agreements.

General procedure is provided by the Order #24 of the Ministry of Health Care"On Approval of Conditions and Order of Employment of Artificial Insemination and Implantation of Embryo(s), and Methods of Their Performance", dated February 4, 1997 ("Order"). Other legislative acts include the Orders of the Ministry of Health Care #489 "On Approval of Statistic Documentation on Issues of Ancillary Reproductive Technologies", dated December 10, 2001, and #579 "On Approval of Order of Assigning Women for Performance of the First Course of Infertility Treatment by Methods of Ancillary Reproductive Technologies on Absolute Grounds for Budget Costs".

Together, these laws outline detailed medical procedure of artificial insemination and embryo implantation. Its general provisions require artificial insemination to be carried out solely in specially accredited medical institutions in accordance with the methods approved by the Ministry of Health Care of Ukraine. It also defines the scope of information that should be provided by the doctor, who carries out the procedure, to the couple seeking medical assistance, namely: the details of the medical procedure of artificial insemination, medical and legal aspects of its consequences, and the results of medical examination of the future surrogate mother.

Below we summarize the key issues that need to be addressed in contracts with both the future surrogate mother and the medical institution, which will be responsible for insemination and further medical surveillance. First and foremost, in any agreement with the future surrogate mother, at a minimum the following issues should be specified:

(a) surrogate mother's health status, and her responsibility for providing valid data in this regard;

(b) medical institution where the procedure will be performed;

(c) the amount of surrogate mother's remuneration for her services;

(d) additional expenses, connected with impregnation, pregnancy, act of delivery and registration of child;

(e) conditions which surrogate mother should observe for the pregnancy period (living conditions, health regime, nutrition);

(f) the procedure of child transfer and registration;

(g) force majeure provisions (delivery of handicapped child, delivery of more than one child, delivery of dead child, complicated delivery resulting in surrogate mother's future infertility);

(h) confidentiality provisions (responsibility for disclosure of information to the child or any third party).

Second, the following provisions will apply to an agreement with the medical institution:

(a) institution's responsibility for choice of surrogate mother and her full medical examination;

(b) institution's responsibility for carrying out the procedure in accordance with the methods approved by the Ministry of Health Care, as well as with genetic parents' requirements;

(c) terms and conditions of medical surveillance during the pregnancy;

(d) confidentiality provisions (responsibility for disclosure of information to the child or any third party).

In most cases, medical institutions provide their draft agreements both for themselves and surrogate mothers. It is important to carefully review these drafts and insist on your amendments if the provided draft does not ensure genetic parents' rights to the full extent. For example, in agreement with a medical institution one can often find a provision that the parents agree not to submit any legal claims against the institution. This provision contradicts one of the basic principles of civil agreements, stated in Article 3 of the Civil Procedural Code of Ukraine, namely, waiving the right to protect your interests in court.

In conclusion, due to the balanced combination of legal acceptability, high qualification of medical staff, comparatively low prices and unparalleled qualities of Ukrainian women, who are ready to assist others in their search of personal happiness, Ukraine provides unique possibilities for couples from all over the world to realize their parental rights. To take advantage of all this, however, one needs to take certain minimum precaution measures, in co-operation with a reliable local lawyer, who is aware of the pitfalls.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Ukrainian Family Law Group
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Ukrainian Family Law Group
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions