Wednesday, December 25, 2013

R.R. v. M.H. & another case brief

R.R. v. M.H. & another case brief summary
689 N.E.2d 790 (1998)

Defendant mother sought review of a decision in the lower court in Massachusetts, which ordered a preliminary injunction in favor of plaintiff father regarding a surrogacy parenting agreement.

The father brought an action against the mother after the mother breached a surrogate parenting agreement. The lower court awarded the father temporary custody of the child and granted a preliminary injunction in favor of the father. The mother sought review.


  • On appeal, the court reversed and held that no private agreement concerning adoption or custody could be conclusive because a judge, passing on custody of a child, must have decided what was in the best interests of the child. 
  • The court also held that an agreement in which a woman agreed to become a surrogate or to relinquish her rights and duties as parent of a child thereafter conceived through assisted conception was void.
The court reversed the preliminary injunction in favor of the father and ordered a declaration that the surrogacy agreement was not enforceable.

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