Parliament passes landmark Surrogacy laws Tue 25 September 2012 Brian Wightman Attorney-General The Attorney-General, Brian Wightman, has welcomed the passing of legislation today which will allow altruistic surrogacy in Tasmania. Mr Wightman said the legislation would help many Tasmanians realise their dream of starting a family of their own. "This is an incredibly important step for Tasmania and I am pleased to complete the process started by my predecessor, and now Premier, Lara Giddings, in bringing this important social reform to fruition," Mr Wightman said. "The rights of the child are central to the new laws. The best interests of the child are the paramount consideration in the exercise of all powers under the Act. "The safeguards built into the Act include requirements for parties entering into surrogacy arrangements to undergo counselling and to obtain independent legal advice, and that parentage of a child will only be transferred where it is found by the Court to be in the best interest of the child." Mr Wightman said the Surrogacy Bill 2011 heralded a new approach to the regulation of surrogacy in Tasmania. He said the Bill decriminalises altruistic surrogacy in Tasmania and provides a legal mechanism for the parentage of a child born as a result of a surrogacy arrangement to be transferred from the birth parent or parents to the intended parent or parents. "This is a Bill that has gone through an intense and robust development and review process and I congratulate all of those dedicated people who have worked to ensure that this important reform is of the highest standard," Mr Wightman said. "I would also like to recognise the important contributions made by the Legislative Council Government Administration "A" Committee which has enhanced the Bill."