National fertility awareness week: domestic surrogacy

Domestic surrogacy: Key facts…

It’s National Fertility Awareness Week, and today we are covering domestic surrogacy.

Surrogacy is the process by which a child is carried through pregnancy by a woman (the surrogate mother) who has entered an arrangement with a couple (the intended parents) that the child will be handed over to them on birth.

Types of surrogacy

Partial surrogacy is the process whereby the surrogate mother is also the biological mother. The child will be genetically related to the intended father (or sperm donor) and the surrogate mother.

Full surrogacy is the process whereby the woman carrying the child is not genetically related to the child, and therefore the child will have no biological connection to the surrogate mother. The embryo can be created from the egg of the intended mother (or donor egg) and the sperm of the intended father (or donor sperm).

Surrogacy in the UK

It is important to be aware that there have been cases where the surrogate mother has changed her mind and wished to keep the child. The court would then need to become involved to try and resolve the situation. Although the courts are sympathetic to intended parents of surrogacy arrangements, surrogacy agreements are not legally binding in the UK and are therefore unenforceable even if the surrogacy expenses have already been paid. The court will act in the best interests of the child and there is case law which supports both parties to such a case.

There are additional rules when it comes to international surrogacy, and these will be covered in National fertility awareness week: International surrogacy.

The Lester Aldridge family team deal with these and other issues on a regular basis.

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About Lester Aldridge LLP

Lester Aldridge LLP is a nationally recognised law firm with offices in London, Bournemouth and Southampton. The family team are leaders in their field. Jane, Jo and Rosie are specialist family solicitors with a wealth of experience in all areas of family law from divorce to children, prenuptial agreements to the settlement of financial disputes and everything in between. These women are feisty when they need to be. But their approach is designed to reduce conflict in order to ensure the best possible outcome. They recognise that family issues can be extremely emotional and they offer access to specialist advice delivered in a friendly, approachable and understandable way designed to guide you from start to finish. If you would like an informal, no-obligation chat with Jane, Jo or Rosie please telephone 03300 539754.