Surrogacy

Egg donation/surrogacy is not permitted in Norway. Nevertheless, some Norwegians make use of surrogacy abroad. There are no special rules governing the establishment/transfer of parenthood in such cases. This means that the person who gives birth to the child is the child's mother and that paternity is established in the ways stipulated by the Children Act.

If maternity/paternity cannot be established in accordance with the Children Act, the person who wishes to be the legal parent must apply for adoption. The Tax Administration, Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV), Children, Youth and Family Affairs Service and foreign service missions have been issued with guidelines on how surrogacy cases are to be dealt with according to current rules.

Egg donation/surrogacy is not permitted in Norway

Nevertheless, some Norwegians make use of surrogacy abroad. There are no special rules governing the establishment/transfer of parenthood in such cases. This means that the person who gives birth to the child is the child's mother and that paternity is established in the ways stipulated by the Children Act. If maternity/paternity cannot be established in accordance with the Children Act, the person who wishes to be the legal parent must apply for adoption. The Tax Administration, Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV), Children, Youth and Family Affairs Service and foreign service missions have been issued with guidelines on how surrogacy cases are to be dealt with according to current rules.

Regulation of egg donation/surrogacy in Norway
The Biotechnology Act regulates the conditions for medically assisted reproduction in Norway. Insemination/the insertion of a woman's own egg into herself is permitted. The prohibition against inserting an egg into another person's body means that this form of surrogacy cannot be carried out in Norway. According to the Children Act, surrogacy agreements are not binding.

Egg donation/surrogacy abroad

The Norwegian authorities presume that Norwegian citizens who use egg donation/surrogacy abroad make arrangements according to, and comply with, the regulations in the country in question. India is a destination for some Norwegian citizens who want to make use of surrogacy. It is important to be aware of new rules in India stipulating
the requirements for those wanting to be parents and the documents that are necessary when entering/leaving the country if the objective is to use surrogacy – refer to the website of the Norwegian foreign service mission in India.

The risk involved in using surrogacy
The use of surrogacy abroad raises several dilemmas. Surrogate mothers often come from poor countries and live in difficult conditions and, in addition to the children, those who strongly wish to be parents may also be vulnerable. Surrogate mothers, the children and those wishing to be parents may therefore be exploited and there may be a risk of human trafficking. Norwegian authorities therefore advise Norwegian citizens against using surrogacy abroad. If a surrogacy contract is nonetheless entered into, the parties must be aware that the child may end up in a situation where it has no legal ties to a Norwegian parent and thus no Norwegian citizenship or other right to stay in Norway.

Surrogacy is a global phenomenon that should be resolved globally. The Hague Conference on Private International Law, of which Norway is also a member, examines issues related to surrogacy. The Hague Conference's secretariat issued interim reports in March 2011, March 2012 and April 2014 that among other things map and describe various forms of national legislation, human rights, the parties' vulnerability and the risk involved in using surrogacy.

The establishment/transfer of parenthood
There are no special rules governing the establishment/transfer of parenthood after the use of egg donation/surrogacy. This means that the person who gives birth to the child is the child's mother and that paternity is established in the ways stipulated by the Children Act. If maternity/paternity cannot be established in accordance with the Children Act, the person who wishes to be the legal parent must apply for adoption. The National Registry has the task of registering parental responsibility. Parental responsibility can be registered provided the paternity/maternity of the child is clear according to Norwegian law. It is important to note that the establishment of paternity through acknowledgement or a change in paternity, or by recognition, does not mean that parental responsibility is automatically determined.

A Norwegian resident who adopts a child pursuant to a foreign adoption process is not entitled to automatic recognition of this adoption by the Norwegian authorities. If a valid adoption has been carried out abroad, an application for recognition must be made to the Children, Youth and Family Affairs Service in order for the adoption to be valid in Norway too, see here. However, recognition will rarely be relevant in surrogacy cases because an adoption is not normally carried out in the country where the child is born. Read more about the prevailing regulations in the Ministry's letter to the Tax Administration, Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV) and Children, Youth and Family Affairs Service, see the link below. The Ministry does not provide assistance in individual cases or give any guidance on the regulations apart from referring to the abovementioned letter. Norwegian authorities do not give any prior consent to the establishment/transfer of parenthood or any guarantees that children born abroad to surrogate mothers will be brought to Norway.

Entry into Norway with a child born abroad to a surrogate mother
A child born abroad to a surrogate mother is entitled to enter Norway once it has obtained Norwegian citizenship (or another citizenship that entitles the child to enter the country) or is entitled to enter/stay in the country pursuant to the Immigration Act. A Norwegian passport for minors requires the consent of the parents with parental responsibility. The same applies to the issuance of an emergency passport.