Amy Kehoe and Scott – a couple from Michigan were trying for a child. Amy underwent miscarriage thrice and was medically advised surrogacy. The couple had found a surrogate mother named Shelly Baker from Detroit. Shelly Baker had four children and had already been a surrogate mother twice. The couple entered into a surrogacy agreement with Shelly Baker. Shelly Baker had then become pregnant carrying the child of the couple.
On July 28 2008 Shelly gave birth to a boy and a girl. After a few days Amy brought the twins Ethan and Bridget home. On August 21st Amy and Scott received the notice from Shelly that the couple must give up the babies in about two weeks. Amy had also received intimation from her attorney that Shelly was going to revoke her adoption. Apparently Shelly has accused Amy of not disclosing information regarding a drug possession incident the latter was charged for years ago and that she was seeing a psychiatrist for anxiety disorder. But Amy claims that Shelly was actually acquainted of the fact that Amy was seeing a psychiatrist.
Unfortunately the laws in Michigan are wary since it is one of the five states that do not recognize surrogacy contracts and hence subsequently making them unenforceable. It is such that irrespective of the intended parent’s genetic relation with the child, the biological mother giving birth to the child would be considered the legal mother. Because of the surrogacy laws in Michigan, Shelly had the final say and on September 3rd the couple were forced to return the babies to Shelly.
These short facts raises serious concerns in choosing to take up surrogacy in states such as Michigan where neither is allowed nor banned. Surrogacy agreements are not enforceable in such states. Surrogacy in India is lot better where the legal complications are far less. In fact there is a nil history of reported case of the surrogate mother claiming the child.