Surrogate Parents

Are there any legal issues which need to be examined before choosing surrogacy as a way of conceiving a child?

What is meant by surrogacy?

Currently worldwide there are many couples who wish to conceive a child but due to medical factors of one or in some kinds both of the parents they are unable to do so.

There are various options open to couples in this situation such as adoption. Surrogacy provides these couples with a different option.

Surrogacy is also an option for men who are part of a same sex couple and who consequently are unable to have children.

Surrogacy is a process whereby a third person (a woman) is brought in as a surrogate parent to carry the child throughout the course of pregnancy. The baby when born will not belong to the surrogate mother but will be provided to the original couple at birth. Consequently legal issues may therefore arise.

Two different kinds of surrogacy

Currently there are two different kinds of surrogacy. They are as follows:

  1. Gestational Surrogacy
  2. Traditional Surrogacy

Gestational Surrogacy

  • Gestational surrogacy is the most common form or surrogacy and is a process whereby the Intended mother (the mother of the original couple) or a Donor’s egg is used. The Child will therefore not be genetically linked to the surrogate mother.
  • Gestational surrogacy is the most common option for a woman who is not able to carry a pregnancy.

Traditional Surrogacy

  • Traditional surrogacy happens whereby the surrogate mother’s egg is fertilized by a sperm donor or by the sperm of the Intended father (the father from the original couple).
  • In the case of traditional surrogacy the unborn child will be genetically related to the surrogate mother.

Can we use IVF for either of these processes?

 In both of the above options for surrogacy the child can be conceived by IVF – in-vitro fertilization – in alternatively by artificial insemination.

Does the surrogate mother have to be from the UK?

Traditionally couples who are unable to conceive and who choose the option of surrogacy will often opt for a surrogate parent from the same country.

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For more information on:

  • So what are the legal issues which need to be taken into consideration?
  • Contractual agreement
  • Surrogate fee
  • Lump sum payment vs. scheduled payments
  • Monthly allowance
  • Parental Rights