Belgian surrogate baby stays with Dutch couple
28 November 2005, BRUSSELS — The Dutch foster parents of Belgian surrogate baby Donna will be allowed to keep the girl following a long and complicated legal battle.
28 November 2005
BRUSSELS — The Dutch foster parents of Belgian surrogate baby Donna will be allowed to keep the girl following a long and complicated legal battle.
The Dutch youth welfare service, Bureau Jeugdzorg Utrecht, has decided against appealing a Utrecht Court ruling allowing the girl to stay with the Dutch couple.
Despite refusing to take parental custody away from the Belgian biological parents at the end of October, the court ruled that there were indications of family life between the Dutch couple and baby Donna.
The decision by Bureau Jeugdzorg not to appeal the ruling means the girl will now stay permanently with the couple from Leusden, near Utrecht.
The Belgian surrogate mother gave Donna to the Dutch couple after initially promising to bear the baby to a heterosexual couple from the Belgian province of Limburg. It is suspected the surrogate mother sold the child.
A complicated legal battle then ensued as both the Dutch couple and the Flemish couple who initiated the surrogate pregnancy fought to gain custody of the girl.
While pregnant, the surrogate mother had offered the baby up for sale on the internet, while the Flemish couple was informed that she'd had a miscarriage.
Seven months into her pregnancy, the surrogate mother came into contact with the Dutch couple, who allegedly bought the baby for as much as EUR 15,000.
Complicating the issue were the claims from the prospective Flemish parents, that the man of that relationship was the biological father of the child. However, the surrogate mother claimed in turn her husband was the baby's father.
The eight-month-old Donna has lived with the Dutch couple since her birth and the couple eventually tried to deprive the Belgian biological parents of custody rights so that they could gain full parental authority.
Bureau Jeugdzorg has always said the girl should return to her country of birth, where she would probably end up in a foster family. However, the bureau has since accepted the court's ruling allowing Donna to stay in the Netherlands.
[Copyright Expatica News 2005]
Subject: Belgian + Dutch news