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Showing posts from February, 2015

Embryo Adoption (and or donation) is an Option

MyFox Houston published a news story today titled Embryo adoptions give some couples hope, in which they revealed that there are 600,000 embryos in storage across the country because of in vitro fertilization efforts, or IVF." The story then featured a family who has two biological children, one traditionally adopted child and one child in which the family "adopted a donated embryo." The adoptive mother carried the donated embryo to term. The story discussed embryo adoption at length finding that many families are donating their leftover embryos to families they have chosen (through an agency) who cannot conceive but who are able to carry the embryo to term or use a surrogate to do so.

This particular type of adoption is much more affordable that the traditional adoption and a lot less risky in that the genetic parent cannot decide to parent once the child is born. This is a huge plus for families who are adopting and who want to experience the beauty of pregnancy fo…

Surrogacy in Texas

KSAT 12 recently did a news story on Surrogacy in Texas and its regulations or the absence thereof. Texas is one of the few states that allow gestational carriers (surrogates) to be compensated. At the Law Office of Jennifer R. Cochran, we represent surrogates as well as donors and intended parents. We draft or review the donor agreement, gestational agreement, pre-birth orders, and more. It's also important for donors and surrogates to speak with their CPA about the tax consequences. Below is the relevant portion of the Texas Family Code that governs gestational agreements:

Sec. 160.754. GESTATIONAL AGREEMENT AUTHORIZED. (a) A prospective gestational mother, her husband if she is married, each donor, and each intended parent may enter into a written agreement providing that:

(1) the prospective gestational mother agrees to pregnancy by means of assisted reproduction;

(2) the prospective gestational mother, her husband if she is married, and each donor other than the intend…

Like it or Not Texas will continue to fight gay marriage

Local and national headlines this week have captured the continuing battle between the Judges and our state government officials on the gay marriage issue. Our own Judge Herman found that the Texas constitutional amendment stating that marriage is between one man and one woman is unconstitutional. This ruling allowed him the ability to further find that a common law marriage existed between two women who resided together and who had drafted wills (but not executed) leaving their estate to the other in a contested probate between the deceased woman's family and her now found common law wife. Judge Herman's ruling then prompted Suzanne Bryant and her partner of 31 years, Sarah Goodfriend, to file a request for injunctive relief from District Judge David Wahlberg (not Judge Herman) in which the Court ordered the County Clerk to issue a marriage license to the couple based on Judge Herman's finding and Ms. Goodfriend's uncertain health. The couple applied for a license imm…

Cochran-Law.com receives a new look!

The Law Office of Jennifer R. Cochran is pleased to announce that our website is now updated to reflect the expansion of our services to include adoptions (agency, private, foreign), reproductive law, mediation, and parenting coordination/facilitation. Although we have been providing these services for quite a while, our previous website only highlighted these services while the new design provides more information. The site also allows current clients to pay their invoices and retainers online and prospective clients can download an intake form to complete before their consultation. Go ahead and take a look!

Adoption Knowledge Affiliates appoints Jennifer Cochran to the Board

The Law Office of Jennifer R. Cochran is proud to announce that Ms. Cochran is now a member of the Board of Directors for AKA, Adoption Knowledge Affiliates, an organization devoted to supporting all members of the adoption triad as well as adoption professionals. The adoption triad is made up of all three members in an adoption to include the birth parent(s), the adoptive parent(s) and the adoptee(s). The organization supports the triad through support groups, monthly meetings, educational resources and an annual conference.

"I'm very excited about becoming more involved in the leadership of AKA. I began going to meetings when my daughter was six months old so that I could learn to talk to her about our adoption journey. I immediately felt connected to the group. Although I provide legal representation in adoptions, I had very little knowledge of the personal impact of adoption until I became a mother to my little girl. AKA has helped me understand the value of open adopti…