Leading cases

biscuit in a pailWe often handle cases which make new law. The following are our published cases:

Re C (declaration of parentage written consent) (2019) - We represented the non-birth mother of a boy who was carried by her female partner.  The couple separated and there were protracted proceedings about the non-birth mother's involvement which culminated in a reported decision about her legal parenthood.  The court ruled that she was a legal parent, notwithstanding that the correct parentage forms had not been signed at the fertility clinic.

Re AD to AH (2017) No. 1 and No. 2 - the President of the High Court Family Division gave important guidance on the court's approach to declarations of parentage in sperm donation cases, creating a clear process for others to follow. We fought for this after representing five lesbian couples whose parenthood was put at risk by errors at their fertility clinics

F v S (2017) - We obtained a child arrangements order for a single dad through US surrogacy to secure his ability to care for his daughter in the U.K. and to highlight his continuing inability to obtain a parental order to resolve things fully

Re P (and others) (2017)  - We represented the two fathers through sperm donation, whose legal status  was jeopardised by incorrect fertility clinic paperwork. The President of the High Court Family Division made declarations of parentage securing their status

Re AB (surrogacy; domicile) (2016) - We represented parents through surrogacy who obtained a U.K. parental order to secure their family status notwithstanding that they were German and living in Germany. The case was described as being 'close to the margin of facts' which would allow the U.K. court to make an order

Re A, B and C (2016) - We won parenthood for the two fathers of three children born to three UK surrogates, who had misled the court about the amounts paid 

M v HFEA (2016, Court of Appeal) - We represented the parents of a deceased daughter who won the right to export her eggs overseas to conceive a grandchild. The case attracted international media attention and was described as a world first

Re Z (No.2) (2016) - The President of the Family Division made a formal declaration of incomptability under the Human Rights Act, ruling that the law discriminated against single parents through surrogacy and breached their human rights. Following this groundbreaking decision, the UK government decided to change U.K. law to give single parents the same rights as couples. The case followed the decision in Re Z (a child) (2015) in which the President of the Family Division that the father was not able to apply for a parental order

Re A (foreign surrogacy: South Africa) (2015) - UK's first South African surrogacy case, in which the UK High Court awarded parenthood to a same-sex couple with multiple international homes

Re A and B (2015) - Landmark surrogacy decision bending the law to allow parents to secure their family's legal status more than six months after the birth - in this case awarding parenthood for children age 8 and 5

M v HFEA (2015) - High-profile judicial review challenging the HFEA's refusal to allow the parents of a deceased young woman to export her stored eggs outside the UK to conceive their grandchild (front page national headline)

H v S (Surrogacy Agreement) (2015) - High-profile High Court decision to award care of a 15 month old girl to a male same-sex couple against the wishes of the birth mother, who had deceived the father about her intentions (front page national headline)

CC v DD (2014) - Key surrogacy case on domicile, which established that parents living outside the UK can in certain circumstances apply to the UK court to become legal parents

Re G and Re Z (2013) – High-profile known donor dispute in which a sperm donor sought a parental role with children being raised by lesbian mothers.  This tested the new law allowing lesbian parents to be named on birth certificates (front page national headline)

Advising the HFEA to re-write its policy and guidance for surrogacy (2013)

AB v DE (2013) – First Russian surrogacy case ratified by the UK court

J v G (2013) - Key case on payments for overseas surrogacy, then representing the highest ever payments ever authorised by the UK court (which is only supposed to permit altruistic surrogacy)

Advising ITV Coronation Street on its surrogacy storyline (2013)

Re A and B (surrogacy domicile) 2013 – Key surrogacy case on domicile, establishing whether non-British parents living in the UK could apply to the UK court to become legal parents

Kyle Casson (2012) - UK's first single dad to conceive through a surrogacy arrangement in the UK

Re D and L (surrogacy) 2012 - Key surrogacy case on consent, the first UK case to ever award parentage without the surrogate’s consent (after an Indian surrogate mother disappeared)

Mark Langridge (2012) - High-profile case in which a sperm donor who donated privately to a lesbian couple in 1998 was pursued by the CSA for maintenance more than a decade later

Re IJ (a child) 2011 – One of the earliest international surrogacy cases, highlighting the legal complications of surrogacy in the Ukrainehandle bars of a bike

Re L (a minor) 2010 – Landmark ruling for parents through commercial surrogacy, establishing that the UK court would now always override the rules against payments to award parentage if it was in the child's best interests, unless the case represented ‘the clearest abuse of public policy’

Melanie and Robert Gladwin (2009) - High-profile embryo storage case by parents seeking to save their embryos from destruction, winning a change to the law permitting storage beyond five years

Re X and Y (foreign surrogacy) 2008 – The UK's very first case to ratify an overseas surrogacy arrangement, in which twins born to British parents were ‘marooned stateless and parentless’ in the Ukraine. This oft-cited case formed the foundation for all subsequent international surrogacy cases heard by the English courts, and was handled by Natalie 

Andy Bathie (2008) - Fireman Andy Bathie donated his sperm to a lesbian couple, and was subsequently pursued for maintenance by the CSA. The case had international news coverage in January 2008 and Natalie was named as The Times' Lawyer of the Week