Card image cap

Where There's a Will, There's a Way: Minimizing the Risk of International Surrogacy Arrangements

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 92 minutes
Recorded Date: February 05, 2019
Click here to share this program
Download PDF
Closed Caption


  • Recognition that estate planning in the U.S. for all intended parents (to determine guardianship of a child born through surrogacy) might not be recognized in foreign countries where such children are intended to return to/with their parents, had the parents not died
  • How to better address estate planning in such situations
  • Understanding application of the 1961 Hague Convention to such situations
  • Exploring whether signatory countries will recognize U.S. wills/estate planning in such situations
  • Exploring the necessity of multiple wills
Runtime: 1 hour and 32 minutes
Recorded: February 5, 2019


U.S. Surrogacy agencies typically have clients execute wills/estate plans that may be ineffective back home in a foreign country. Children may not be able to migrate if their parents die before recognized in a home country as parents. Considerably better and coordinated international estate planning may minimize such risks.

This program was recorded on February 5th, 2019.

Provided By

American Bar Association
Card image cap


Card image cap

Richard B. Vaughn

International Fertility Law Group

Fertility law attorney Rich Vaughn combined his passion for family formation with over 20 years of experience in business and technology law and founded International Fertility Law Group (IFLG), one of the most successful and best-known law firms in the world focusing on assisted reproductive technology law.

Rich Vaughn first studied reproductive and fertility law at Loyola University Chicago School of Law in the early 1990s. In 1993, Rich began providing litigation, contract, technology, marketing and corporate legal services to individual clients, companies and municipalities in Chicago and Los Angeles. During his own experience of becoming a parent via egg donation and surrogacy, Rich discovered a renewed passion for fertility law and launched IFLG, which focuses exclusively on assisted reproductive technology legal services. Since then he’s had the opportunity to help thousands of intended parents from all over the world create families via assisted reproduction.

In addition to his busy legal practice, Rich devotes numerous volunteer hours to advancing the field of ART law and is a dedicated advocate for LGBT intended parents and families. He is immediate past chair of the American Bar Association (ABA) Family Law Section Committee on Assisted Reproductive Technology, which played a leading role in developing model legislation to assist states in regulating assisted reproductive technology medical providers and donor and surrogacy agencies. He served on the National Board of Path2Parenthood (formerly American Fertility Association) and is an active member of the California Bar Association (CBA) and its Family Law Section, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) Legal Professionals Group, and the National LGBT Bar Association. He has been published in numerous professional journals, including the American Bar Association’s SciTech Lawyer, for which he also served as issue editor, International Family Law Journal, Family Law Review, American Journal of Fertility Law and the Australian Family Law Journal; he has presented at numerous legal and family-building conferences around the U.S., including Yale University School of Law and California Western School of Law; and he has been cited as a fertility law expert in numerous reports, including The Washington Post, CNN, National Public Radio (NPR), Parenting Magazine Live, and The ABA Journal, to name a few.

Away from the office, Rich is a proud advocate for LGBT equality and gay and lesbian parenting as a member and supporter of the Family Equality Council and provides community service in the medical, health and wellness industries. He is also an experienced fitness instructor, triathlete, a former paramedic, and board member of a medical device company. In 2008, Rich and his spouse, Tommy Woelfel, were married in California and became the proud parents, through egg donation and surrogacy, of twin sons Aiden and Austin.

Card image cap

Natalie Gamble

Founding Member
Natalie Gamble Associates

Natalie is known internationally, not only as the UK's leading fertility lawyer but also for her gentle tenacity which has enabled much needed change in the UK legal system. Having built her own donor-conceived family in 2001, Natalie was the first solicitor to pioneer fertility law in the UK.

Natalie has been named in the Independent on Sunday's Pink List as one of the UK's 100 most influential gay people, named as the Times Lawyer of the Week, and nominated for Stonewall’s Hero of the Year Award for her defense of same-sex parents. She is listed by Legal 500 in their elite list of lawyers who are leaders in their field and ranked as a Band 1 leading lawyer by Chambers. She was also one of the first international fellows to be admitted to the US-based Academy of Adoption and Assisted Reproduction Attorneys, and she is the Chair of the UK and Ireland LGBT Family Law Institute. In 2010 her work was recognized with an invitation to meet the Prime Minister at a 10 Downing Street reception.

Natalie is often interviewed by the BBC and in the national press, and is a regular voice on the BBC Radio 4 Today Program and Woman's Hour.

Card image cap

Stephen Page

Harrington Family Lawyers

Stephen is a partner with Harrington Family Lawyers, Brisbane, a long established boutique family law firm. He has been admitted for over 20 years, and practices primarily in family law. He has practiced in all areas of family law, including: divorce and separation, property settlement, custody and children's disputes, Hague convention matters, de facto property disputes, gay and lesbian disputes, domestic violence, pre-nuptial and cohabitation agreements, binding financial agreements, adult and child maintenance, child support, adoption and child protection matters. Stephen is an accredited family law specialist and is on the panel of independent children's lawyers. He helped community groups over many years, especially those involved in promoting equality and combating the scourge of domestic violence.

Card image cap

Similar Courses

Card image cap
95 minutes
401k and Other Retirement Topics for Beginners and Non-ERISA Attorneys
Join us to learn the basics of defined contribution retirement plan issues under ERISA, including 401(k) plans.

American Bar Association


Add to Cart
Card image cap
92 minutes
A.R.T. History 101
Oftentimes, knowing the history of something is the best way to understand its application today. Join us as we review the history of assisted reproductive technologies (ART) from both legal and medical perspectives, explore the legal and medical advancements in this field, and learn how ART's history has shaped the current legal landscape.

American Bar Association


Add to Cart
Card image cap
63 minutes
ADR in Divorce: Fast-Tracking Resolutions
Successful mediators have come to learn that truth is a critical element in any successful family and matrimonial negotiation. However, in an adversarial negotiation, trust is a relative thing.

American Bar Association


Add to Cart
Card image cap
94 minutes
Arbitration of ERISA Claims
Experts will address questions on arbitrating ERISA claims.

American Bar Association


Add to Cart
Previous Next