New rules apply for working out who can be recorded as parents for children born as a result of treatment on or after 6 April 2009. These rules apply under the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008.

The law applies to both heterosexual couples and same-sex female couples.

In all cases, the woman who gives birth to the baby is the mother.

Other factors decide who is to be legally treated as the father or second parent. Some factors that are taken into account include:

  • if a couple are or were married to, or in a civil partnership with each other. Or if not, if they had a parenthood agreement together at the time of the treatment
  • the date of the treatment
  • where the treatment took place
  • if the treatment was carried out by a licensed person