HUNTINGTON - A couple have filed a petition for declaration of parentage against the surrogate and her husband.

Jeannette Rosenbaum was physiologically unable to carry an infant or infants to term, so she and her husband, Frank Rosenbaum, utilized the services of Connecticut Fertility Associates of Bridgeport, Conn., and also engaged the services of Samantha Hamilton, a gestational surrogate, according to a petition filed Aug. 29 in Cabell Circuit Court.

The Rosenbaums claim under the direction of licensed medical personnel at Connecticut Fertility Associates, Hamilton was placed on hormonal therapy with estrace on Dec. 20 and received increasing doses, which rendered her unable to ovulate on her own on or near the date of the embryo transfer procedure.

Serial monitoring of the hormonal blood levels of Hamilton demonstrated conclusively that she did not ovulate at that time and on Jan. 23, Dr. Michael Doyle performed an embryo transfer procedure whereby he transferred two viable embryos belonging to Frank Rosenbaum and Jeannette Rosenbaum into Hamilton's uterus, according to the suit.

The Rosenbaums claim the pregnancy that ensued following the procedure is the result of the embryo transfer procedure and the child is expected to be born Oct. 4.

Prior to the embryo transfer procedure and throughout the pregnancy, it was understood and agreed by the plaintiffs and Hamilton and her husband, Samuel Hamilton, that the Rosenbaums are the rightful parents of the child that the plaintiffs, with the full understanding, consent and cooperation of the defendants, would take all necessary legal steps to have themselves and the defendants declared to be father and mother of the child on the birth certificate of the child so that the Rosenbaums might assume their rightful parental duties toward the child immediately following the birth, according to the suit.

The Rosenbaums claim the defendants have no intention of exercising physical or legal custody of or any parental rights and duties with respect to any child born as the result of the embryo transfer and gestational surrogacy process and are not prepared to parent the child.

The Hamiltons disclaim and relinquish any and all parental rights and responsibilities to the child in favor of the Rosenbaums, according to the suit.

The Rosenbaums claim they are fit and proper persons to have the care, custody and control of the child to be born and are able to provide for the child's financial, emotional and physical needs.

It is in the best interests of the child that the Rosenbaums receive immediate sole care, custody and control of the child and be recognized in all respects as the parents of the child, according to the suit.

The Rosenbaums are seeking for the court to accept their notarized affidavits; enter an order establishing and declaring the Rosenbaums to be the father and mother of the child now being carried by Samantha Hamilton; enter an order directing the relevant authorities at the hospital to submit the appropriate documentation to the West Virginia Registrar of Vital Statistics and any other relevant West Virginia authorities so that  any and all birth records of the child shall reflect the parentage of the Rosenbaums; enter an order providing that the Rosenbaums shall receive immediate sole custody, care and control of the child and shall be parents of the child with all rights and responsibilities; enter an order providing that the Hamiltons have no parental rights and responsibilities to the child; enter an order directing the hospital authorities, local registrar, state registrar or other persons in charge of the birth registration to enter the Rosebaums as the mother and father; and enter an order directing the hospital authorities, local registrar, state registrar or other person in charge of the birth registration of the child to enter the Rosenbaums and parents. They are being represented by Krista Conway of Conway Law Office.

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge David M. Pancake.

Cabell Circuit Court case number: 13-C-632

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