The UAE's laws on IVF and surrogacy rights have been amended - here's what you must know
27 October 2023| Last updated on 31 October 2023
Previously, non-Muslim couples in the UAE could only undergo IVF treatment if they're married.
But now, unmarried non-Muslims residing in the UAE are allowed to do IVF (in vitro fertilisation) treatments following new amendments to the local law, The National reports.
As per Article 8 of the new decree, non-Muslim couples who do not have a marriage certificate can now request permission from their local health authority to start the fertility procedure. However, the couple is required to register the child under both their names.
"If there’s no marriage certificate, non-Muslim individuals can seek permission from the health authority to utilise IVF techniques," stated the new ruling, as published in the Official Gazette.
Can unmarried Muslims get IVF in the UAE?
No, Muslim couples in the UAE are still required to be married and must present proof before starting IVF treatment. The law amendment only applies to non-Muslims.
Under the new decree, it is no longer illegal for couples to use a surrogate mother.
Since mid-2023, women can have their eggs frozen in the country for up to five years. This gives them less pressure to find a partner, and allows women to focus on their careers until they're ready to have a family.
However, couples seeking fertility treatment in the UAE are not allowed to have a sperm donor who is not the husband, nor is it legal to have an egg donor other than the wife. This remains illegal in the emirates.