Eversheds Harry Elias Family and Matrimonial team successfully acted for a client in a landmark High Court case

Eversheds Harry Elias Family and Matrimonial team successfully acted for a client in a landmark High Court case
15 Jan 2019

Eversheds Harry Elias Family and Matrimonial team, led by Partner Koh Tien Hua, Partner Ivan Cheong and Senior Associate Shaun Ho, successfully acted for a client in a landmark High Court case. This is the first reported contested adoption case involving a gay man seeking to adopt his own biological child in Singapore who was conceived through surrogacy.  The appeal was heard by three judges (two of whom sit in the Court of Appeal) which is very rare for a High Court appeal and one constituted in cases of public policy such that it is effectively the Court of Appeal sitting. Quorum of the bench is Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon, Judge of Appeal Judith Prakash and Justice Debbie Ong (current Presiding Judge of the Family Justice Court). Our client’s appeal on his adoption application which involved consideration of novel issues of surrogacy and public policy was allowed on appeal in a ground breaking decision by the High Court.

This case has generated worldwide attention due to the issues involved. It has been reported and members of the legal team have been interviewed in both local and international media.

Media coverage following the decision by the High Court:

Koh Tien Hua’s view:

"This is the first time that surrogacy and gay adoption has been canvassed in court. The judgment recognises the important role of Family in the child's life and found that an adoption order would be in the child's best interests."

Ivan Cheong’s view:

"This is an important case as the Court had to consider public policy considerations in its decision and how such considerations would be weighed against competing concerns in future decisions. At the end of the day it is the child's best interests that proved to be the determinative factor and the Court accepted that the child's welfare would be best served by the adoption order notwithstanding there were public policy considerations against the making of the order.

Our client is overjoyed and happy that at the end of a long adoption process, the child’s welfare is upheld and that an adoption order is in the child’s best interests. Having the child recognized as being legitimate and having his long term residential status in Singapore secured have always been our client’s primary concerns."

 

For more information, please contact our Business Development Manager, Ricky Soetikno at rickysoetikno@eversheds-harryelias.com

 

Contact: 

Koh Tien Hua

Partner
Co-Head, Family and Matrimonial Law and Private Client Advisory
T: 
+65 6361 9895
F: 
+65 6438 3777
E: 
KohTienHua@eversheds-harryelias.com

Ivan Cheong

Partner
Family and Matrimonial Law
T: 
+65 6361 9341
F: 
+65 6438 0550
E: 
IvanCheong@eversheds-harryelias.com
Related Expertise: