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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has changed and updated its fertility laws, which now allow for legal surrogacy, as well as IVF, for unmarried, non-Muslim couples. This is being seen as a commitment to tolerance and inclusivity, as these practices were previously against the law. There are still caveats and restrictions to the options couples have, but they can begin to move forward with creating a family in ways that were previously closed to them.
Laws surrounding egg freezing and IVF have both been relaxed, and non-Muslim couples can now look into family planning that includes these options. However, the egg and sperm used for IVF must come from the couple wanting to have the child, and donors are not allowed. This is true with IVF and also with surrogacy, which will ensure that the child created is biologically tied to both of their parents.
A clause that criminalized surrogacy was removed during updates to the law, and it’s now legal for another woman to carry a child for a non-Muslim couple in some cases. There are still requirements for consent from UAE regulators, though, for any couple who wants to use a surrogate. Once approved, the procedure can go forward. While it’s still somewhat restrictive, it opens up an option that was previously completely closed to couples living in the UAE.
Additionally, a couple doesn’t have to be married to use IVF, or to freeze and preserve embryos and eggs. Egg freezing was allowed in 2021, but it was for married couples only. The newly relaxed regulations mean more couples can have children without being married, as not every couple wants to marry. Embryos and eggs can both be preserved for as long as five years, and there are options for extensions depending on the circumstances.
There are many more unmarried, non-Muslim couples in the country today, and with that comes a growing demand for these services. Now the UAE has seen that this is the time for change, allowing more partners to become parents. The changes will also help boost medical tourism and support the area’s economy, so it has value for more than just couples wanting to become parents.
International clients are integral to The Surrogacy Law Center and we pride ourselves on the level of service we are able to provide them! Our experienced staff speak Mandarin, Cantonese, French, Spanish and Portuguese, and are dedicated to drafting comprehensive surrogacy, egg, sperm and embryo donation contracts as well timely and thorough parentage orders. No matter what your legal needs may be, we are here for you. Contact us today to learn more!