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Law Commission opens consultation on its next programme of law reform

Commission proposes reviews of laws relating to surrogacy and to children’s social care

The Law Commission has opened the consultation for its 13th Programme of law reform. The responses received will inform the majority of the Law Commission's work from 2017 to 2020.

The Commission is asking for the public's help to identify areas of the substantive law of England and Wales that need reform, and to prioritise those reforms.

The Commission is also suggesting some potential projects that could form part of its Programme, and it would like to have views on these, and whether they should form part of its work in the next few years.

In particular, the Commission has proposed that the laws relating to surrogacy and to children's social care may require review. In respect of surrogacy, the Commission notes that the main legislation concerning surrogacy is the Surrogacy Act 1985 and (in respect of the making of parental orders) the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008. The law has struggled to adapt to changes in attitudes, a growing demand for surrogacy arrangements, and an increasing number of overseas surrogacy arrangements. For more information about this proposal, please click here.

The provision of social care for children and families in England continues to be governed by Part 3 of the Children Act 1989, which places responsibilities on local authorities to provide support to those who need it. The Commission observes that the time may be right to review the operation of Part 3. For more information about this proposal, please click here.

A full list of proposals is here.

The Commission would welcome views on whether it would be helpful to consider the issues proposed, including those noted above, and whether there are any other issues which the Law Commission should look at. A form to send any comments can be downloaded from this page, and should then be emailed to