Update April 3, 2020, 4:00pm EDT
We held a webinar on Friday, April 3rd to discuss Canada’s response to foreign surrogacy immigration during the COVID-19 pandemic. Speakers on this webinar included:
– Leia Swanberg, CEO of Canadian Fertility Consulting
– Stephen Green, Managing Partner at Green and Spiegel LLP and Certified by the Law Society as a Specialist in Immigration Law
– Tim Golden, U.S. Practice Director at Green and Spiegel LLP
– Alexandra Cole, Barrister & Solicitor at Green and Spiegel LLP
– Cindy Wasser, Barrister and Solicitor, Hope Springs Fertility Law™
Update March 27, 2020, 6:00pm EDT
Today’s webinar on Surrogacy in Canada: Ongoing Solutions re: COVID-19 Concerns is now available to watch online!
Leia Swanberg, CEO of Canadian Surrogacy-Fertility Consulting was joined by Dr. Daneshmand of San Diego Fertility Center and lawyers Rachel West and Ellen Embury of Surrogacy Law at Carbert Waite LLP. Together they answered important questions such as:
– Is it safe for my surrogate to get pregnant now?
– How can we keep our surrogate safe if she is pregnant?
– Legally, has the process changed with us getting into Canada?
– How can we access support? How can we ensure our surrogate is being supported?
Update March 18, 2020, 1:00pm EDT
Today in the video above, I addressed questions on COVID-19 and Surrogacy and how it affects us. We really want to convey that if Canada is over-reacting, that is the best news. I want to reassure you that CFC is open. We are continuing to care for our clients and our surrogates. Our sister company EggHelpers is continuing to care for their Intended Parents and Egg Donors. We will be providing a French version of this important update on Friday, March 20, 2020 via Facebook. A video will also be shared here on our blog.
– Leia Swanberg, CEO & Founder
Update March 17, 2020, 5:30pm EDT
In response to COVID-19 and foreign clients travelling to Canada for their birth.
Hope Springs Fertility Law and I have been working hard to obtain a government response to the crisis involving travel bans and foreign lockdowns with respect to our foreign intended parents.
Yesterday, we were introduced to Global Affairs and Cindy, of Hope Springs spoke with them this morning. She advised that at this time, Canada will not intervene with foreign countries to repatriate Canadians so would not help foreigners. No one contemplated intended parents having babies here who would be Canadian citizens in need.
She immediately introduced Cindy and I to Immigration and Citizenship Canada (ICC) who called us this afternoon.
As you know, many countries have issued lockdowns that will prevent intended parents from leaving their country. Canada also issued a travel ban preventing foreigners from entering this country. There are two relevant exemptions. One, is that as of now US citizens may enter so intended parents from there will not be affected – FOR NOW. The second is that anyone with a ‘Canadian relative’ may enter.
The definition of ‘Canadian relative’ under the Immigration Act, excludes parents. The intent of the legislation to prevent adults from bringing their parents here. No one contemplated babies born out of surrogacy arrangements who would need the parents to care for them here.
The Policy Director is bringing this to the Minister’s attention to raise with Cabinet. It may require an amendment or emergency relief but we have good reason to believe that relief will come soon. As you can all imagine, they are a busy Cabinet right now but this is viewed by her as a serious emergency.
She asked that we bring to her attention for the moment, any emergency situations, imminent births.
If any of you cannot get here for an imminent birth, you may provide us your names and country of domicile. It may be that both Global Affairs and ICC will be able to bring you in.
Please also consider the two-week self-quarantine when entering Canada.
Please note that we will be continuing to provide updates when we have anything relevant to share.
Leia Swanberg, CEO & Founder
March 12, 2020, 10:30am EDT
CFC wishes to ensure that we are staying up-to date with new information and providing the most recent information to our clients.
We will be relying on the Health Canada website and the World Health Organization website to provide accurate and timely updates to you.
In Canada, there are currently no travel bans, however CFC will respect your surrogates decision regarding travel for screening, transfers and other out of town medical appointments.
If your surrogate decides not to travel based on COVID-19, CFC will update you. Please know it is her intention to stay healthy and/or keep your baby safe.
If you have a child due within the next 4 weeks, we suggest travel now to her community so you are there for the imminent birth of your child. Please speak to your lawyer about this.
If you are located in Italy or another country with an imminent travel ban, please contact our CEO Leia by email (firstname.lastname@example.org)to discuss options regarding travel.
We imagine your clinic will also be providing updates, however if they do not, please reach out to Leia so she can follow up directly with your physician.
We are hopefully that this situation resolves quickly, however we wish to be proactive in dealing with the situation.
-Leia Swanberg, CEO and Founder of Canadian Fertility Consulting