Surrogacy is when another person carries a pregnancy on behalf of another person, often called an “intended parent”. After the child is born, the intended parent becomes the legal guardian. A family member, friend, or a person recommended by a surrogacy organisation can all be a surrogate. There’s paperwork to complete to ensure everyone consents to the arrangement, so it’s smart to consult a lawyer before beginning the surrogacy process.
There are two different types of surrogacy to be aware of: full (also called “host” or “gestational” surrogacy) and partial (also called “straight” or “traditional” surrogacy).
In full surrogacy, there is no genetic connection between the child and the surrogate. This could mean having the surrogate implanted with an embryo made from you and your partner’s own eggs and sperm.
In partial surrogacy, there is a genetic connection between the child and the surrogate. This could mean having the surrogate’s egg fertilised with sperm from you or your partner. Note: if you decide partial surrogacy is right for you, be sure to use a reputable clinic — this is not a DIY operation.5
There are a few important considerations: most importantly, the age of the surrogate, then the age of the eggs used, and the type of treatment. Other factors to consider include the quality of the sperm used, whether it’s from a donor or partner, and the surrogate’s ability to get pregnant.6
It depends on the type of surrogacy you have, but generally, it is between £20,000-30,000.7 Intended parents have to pay for the surrogate's medical care and reasonable expenses, their own legal fees, and, in some cases, donor eggs.