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Hawaii Surrogacy Law Overview

The Center for Surrogate Parenting walks you through Hawaii surrogacy law

Surrogacy is a beautiful family-building method. However, it can be complex, especially when it comes to the laws surrounding it. Thankfully, our experienced surrogacy agency is well-versed in the surrogacy laws of each state, including Hawaii surrogacy law. In fact, the Center for Surrogate Parenting (CSP) has completed finalizations of parental rights in this state.

As the oldest surrogacy agency in the world, we have helped U.S. and international parents to welcome healthy babies with help from U.S. surrogates. We are proud to say that we have never experienced issues with intended parents being able to bring their babies home.

To help you learn more about Hawaii surrogacy law and how to create a surrogacy contract, we’ve included some basic information below. You can also contact us for more information.

    • Is a surrogacy contract valid and enforceable?

      There are no statutes or published case law specifically permitting or prohibiting surrogacy, but Hawaii courts are generally favorable towards surrogacy arrangements where the intended parents use their own gametes, rather than those of a donor.

    • Does the state have surrogacy laws and/or case law?

      Hawaiian law establishes that the woman who delivers a child is the presumed natural, legal mother of that child and if she is married, her husband is the presumed father. As such, the intended parents must file a petition to establish parentage.

    • Are the courts typically favorable or unfavorable towards surrogacy arrangements?

      Hawaii courts are typically favorable towards surrogacy arrangements, although pre-birth orders are not allowed.

    • Is commercial surrogacy legal?

      Yes, commercial surrogacy is legal in Hawaii and the intended parents are permitted to compensate the surrogate for her time and expenses. Such compensation is typically arranged for in a surrogacy contract.

    • Is traditional surrogacy permitted?

      It is unclear.

    • Is gestational surrogacy allowed?


    • What are the requirements for an enforceable surrogacy contract?

      Since Hawaii does not have a statutory rule on this, there is not a specific set of guidelines for when a judge may uphold the validity of a surrogacy arrangement. Parties should articulate their intentions, desires, roles and responsibilities as clearly and specifically as possible to provide proper framework for dispute resolution should an issue arise.

      Additionally, the intended parents and the surrogate (and her spouse, if applicable) should have independent legal counsel. The surrogate must also meet specific requirements and the agreement must include provisions that discuss the legal, financial and contractual rights, expectations, penalties and obligations of the surrogacy agreement.

    • Can both intended parents be declared the legal parents?

      Yes, but only if the intended parents are a married or unmarried couple who are using their own sperm and eggs, meaning that both are genetically related to the child.

      If only one intended parent is genetically related to the child, then the genetic parent will be named on the parentage order. The non-genetic parent will be required to complete a post-birth adoption (requiring a two-step process).

    • Are pre-birth and post-birth orders permitted?

      While pre-birth parentage orders are typically unavailable, courts permit post-birth parentage orders and will usually grant a parentage order to any intended parent who is biologically related to the child.

      A hearing is required, and the judge can determine which parties are required to attend based on whether an egg or sperm donor was used. If the intended parents used an egg and/or sperm donor, then in addition to the surrogate (and her husband, if applicable), the intended parents will most likely also be required to be in attendance.

    • Will the state honor a pre-birth order issued by another state?


    • What do intended parents need to know about getting the baby’s birth certificate?

      The intended parents will get their baby’s birth certificate 6-12 weeks after delivery. Same-sex parents will be listed as Parent and Parent.

      International gay couples can obtain an initial birth certificate that names the biological father and gestational carrier. They can subsequently obtain a birth certificate that names the biological father or both fathers only, with no mention of the surrogate, but only after the necessary legal proceeding.

    • Are post-birth adoptions permitted?

      Yes, any intended parent who is not genetically related to the child will be required to complete a post-birth adoption to secure his or her legal parental rights.

    • Are second-parent adoptions permitted?

      Second parent adoptions are permitted and available to unmarried couples. Whether a second parent adoption will or won’t be granted depends on the judge and the court.

    • Are stepparent adoptions permitted?

      Yes, stepparent adoptions are permitted and are available to married couples.

VorzimerMasserman Disclaimer: This is a summary for informational use only and should not be relied upon for legal advice. Please note that the state laws regarding surrogacy frequently change and vary from county to county. The attorneys of VorzimerMasserman are only licensed in California. VorzimerMasserman shall not be responsible for any liability associated with this list.