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Well Known Cases

Louisa Ghevaert has dealt with leading and groundbreaking fertility and family law cases in the UK since 2008. These cases transcend the fertility, family and medical sectors. They have helped change and improve law, policy and practice in Britain for fertility patients, parents, children and families.

Scales of Justice

2019

XX v Whittington Hospital NHS Trust [2018] EWCA Civ 2832; where for the first time the Court of Appeal awarded damages for the costs of fertility treatment, donor eggs and commercial surrogacy in California for a woman rendered infertile and unable to carry a pregnancy following a delay in detecting cancer in smear tests and biopsies. Louisa Ghevaert gave expert evidence in the case, which featured in The Telegraph 19 December 2018 and The Times, The Telegraph, The Mail Online and The Mirror on 27 January 2019.

Fertility treatment, fertility preservation and maximisation, surrogacy, donor conception, medical negligence and family law.

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2018

Y v A Healthcare NHS Trust & The HFEA & Z (by his litigation friend, The Official Solicitor) [2018] EWCOP 18, a first-of-its kind judgement which secured a unique legal ruling from the Court of Protection to extract and store sperm from a fatally injured man for use in posthumous fertility treatment and featured in The Independent (13 July 2018) and The Times (14 July 2018).

Posthumous conception and fertility treatment law

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AB v CD, EF, GH & IL [2018] EWHC 1590 (Fam), representing an intended mother in international contested assisted reproduction and modern family law proceedings in the High Court concerning 2 surrogate born children. This case marks a legal first in the treatment of blended families in the UK following assisted reproduction, divorce, re-marriage, serious allegations of domestic violence and abuse as well as the legal status and identity of two surrogate born children, their biological, intended and social parents and arrangements for the children’s care and upbringing.

International surrogacy law dispute, children and family law

Skipping Children

2017

XX v Whittington Hospital NHS Trust [2017] EWHC 2318 (QB), being the first legal case in the UK in which the High Court awarded damages to a woman for altruistic UK surrogacy and fertility treatment following a delay in detecting cancer in smear tests and biopsies. This case marks the cross-section of fertility, family and medical negligence law. It highlights the importance of fertility, surrogacy and family law aspects when medical negligence renders a woman infertile and unable to carry a pregnancy. Louisa Ghevaert gave expert evidence in this case.

Fertility treatment, fertility preservation and maximisation, surrogacy, donor conception, medical negligence and family law 

Egg and Sperm
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2016

In the matter of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 (Case V) [2016] EWHC 2356 (Fam), obtaining a declaration of parentage in the High Court for a woman in a same-sex relationship for a child conceived through fertility treatment at a UK fertility clinic licensed by the HFEA.  The HFEA Consent Form WP was missing from the clinic file. The case for the first time gave guidance on the practice of making interim costs orders in favour of patients to fund litigation and access to justice following errors in the completion of consent forms at UK fertility clinics.

Fertility treatment, children and family law

2014

In JP v LP & Ors [2014] EWHC 595 (Fam), acting for the intended father in a high profile complex UK surrogacy dispute case following marriage breakdown and divorce. This case established for the first time a legal framework for cases where the legal criteria for a parental order cannot be met, including wardship, and featured in The Telegraph, BBC News and Mail Online (6 March 2014).

UK surrogacy law dispute, children and family law

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2013

In Re C [2013] EWHC 2408 (Fam), obtaining a parental order for intended parents who conceived a child through a Californian (USA) commercial surrogacy arrangement. This case redefines the English Court’s approach to the authorisation of commercial payments in view of the UK public policy restriction against commercial surrogacy.

International surrogacy, children and family law

Pregnant mum

2012

Andrea Heywood, who aged 24, was denied IVF funding on the NHS by her local hospital authority for being too young and featured in The Independent and Mail Online (4 June 2012).

Fertility treatment and medical law

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2011

Donna and Dean Marshall, helping them win a rare legal battle against their PCT for funding for IVF treatment on the NHS and featured in The Telegraph and BBC South Today (20 December 2011) and the Portsmouth News (21 December 2011).

Fertility treatment and medical law

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In Re IJ (a Child) [2011] EWHC 921, obtaining a parental order for British parents whose surrogate born child was born stateless and parentless in Ukraine. The case highlights the legal difficulties associated with foreign surrogacy and the importance of expert legal advice.

International surrogacy, children and family law

2010

In Re L (a minor) [2010] EWHC 3146 (Fam), obtaining a parental order for British parents who conceived a child with a US surrogate mother. The case marks a legal watershed ruling that the welfare of the child is decisive over the public policy ban on commercial surrogacy in the UK except in the clearest cases of abuse of public policy and featured in The Telegraph (8 December 2010).

International surrogacy, children and family law

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2009

Melanie and Robert Gladwin, helping them to save their frozen embryos from destruction and winning a high profile last minute change to the law in relation to embryo storage in September 2009.  Louisa Ghevaert was subsequently featured as The Times Lawyer of the Week (1 October 2009) and Law Society Gazette Lawyer in the News (17 September 2009).

Embryo and fertility treatment law

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2008

In Re X and Y (foreign surrogacy) [2008] EWHC 3030 (Fam), being the first case in UK legal history to test the law for British parents conceiving through an international commercial surrogacy arrangement and which involved complex and groundbreaking legal issues, featured in BioNews (January 2009)

International surrogacy, children and family law

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