State Sen. Brent Howard was on hand for a ceremonial bill signing recently held at the Capitol for House Bill 2468, creating the Oklahoma Gestational Agreement Act. Howard, R-Altus, is principal Senate author of the measure and worked with House principal author, Rep. Jason Dunnington, D-Oklahoma City, to get the measure approved and signed into law during the 2019 legislative session.
“Options for growing loving families have greatly expanded in recent years, with many families turning to in vitro fertilization, in utero fertilization and gestational carriers,” Howard said. “Such arrangements can be a blessing, but our statutes needed to be updated in order to address these agreements, providing clear legal guidelines and protections for those involved.”
Under the new law, this act allows women to enter into an agreement to become pregnant with the genetic child of one or more intended parents and/or donors. A carrier must be at least 21 years of age, have given birth to at least one child, been a resident of Oklahoma for at least 90 consecutive days, and they must have completed physical and mental medical evaluations. The measure limits the parties of a gestational agreement to the carrier, carrier’s spouse if applicable, and each intended parent of the child.
“I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Representative Dunnington and I thank my fellow members and Governor Stitt for their support of this legislation,” Howard said. “I believe having clear guidelines for these agreements will help hopeful parents and surrogates move forward with greater confidence knowing that their rights are outlined in state law.”
Legislative Assistant Meagan Hansen, Gayle Garrett with Surrogate Solutions, Andy Long, Laura Long, daughters Maddie and Della, Gov. Kevin Stitt, Rep. Jason Dunnington, D-Oklahoma City, Sen. Brent Howard and Jennifer Howard gathered in the Governor’s Blue Room for the recent ceremonial signing of legislation creating the Oklahoma Gestational Agreement Act. Howard and Dunnington were principal authors of the legislation.