Surrogacy is the process by which a lady carries a child for an individual or a couple (Intended Parents). Depending on the arrangement, the intention is usually for the surrogate’s legal and parental rights to be extinguished upon the making of a Parental Order.
Surrogacy is gestational or traditional. Gestational surrogacy is when the surrogate mother has no genetic connection to the child. IVF procedures will be used to create an embryo that will be transferred into the surrogate’s uterus. An embryo is created using the gametes of the Intended Parents. It may also be created using an individual’s gametes with an egg or sperm donor (known or anonymous). To apply for a Parental Order, one of the applicants must be biologically connected to the child. If there is no biological connection, you will be advised about adoption options.
Straight / Traditional surrogacy is where the surrogate mother is biologically connected to the child. The surrogate agrees to use her own eggs in which case self-insemination or, IUI (intrauterine insemination) is attempted using the male IPs sperm. A clinic should be used for this procedure to eliminate any doubt as to the artificial nature of the insemination.
Surrogacy can be used by gay couples to create a family. An embryo is created using a known or anonymous egg donor, and then fertilised with sperms from one of the men. The embryo is then transferred into the womb of the surrogate. In some countries it is permissible to transfer an embryo belonging to each male. To apply for a Parental Order, one of the men must be biologically connected to the child.
A lesbian couple may choose to use a surrogate. A known or anonymous sperm donor is used to create an embryo using eggs from one of the females. The resulting embryo is then transferred into the womb of the surrogate. To apply for a Parental Order, one of the women must be biologically connected to the child. See here for advice about surrogacy with double donation.
A single person may choose to use a surrogate. An embryo is created using a known or anonymous donor. The resulting embryo is then transferred into the womb of the surrogate. To apply for a Parental Order, the single applicant must be biologically connected to the child.
The most important thing to do is to get legal advice before you proceed. You need to be sure that you can become the legal parent once the child is born. Legal parenthood is determined before insemination or embryo transfer and cannot be undone without a court Order or in some cases, it can never be undone.
For more information and advice about surrogacy please contact me.