Surrogacy is an arrangement that involves having another woman carry and deliver your baby for you. If you are unable to conceive or have been advised against childbirth from your obstetrician, a caring surrogate may be able to help you have a healthy child.
Surrogacy can be arranged through a qualified agency or arranged privately. Due to the emotional and legal complexities of surrogacy, it is always a good idea to find a legal professional experienced in surrogacy to help you through the process. There are two types of surrogacy: gestational and traditional.
In a gestational surrogacy arrangement, the surrogate carries a pregnancy and delivers a child that is created from the egg and/or sperm of the intended parents, or from donor eggs or sperm. A gestational surrogate is not the biological parent of the child.
If you and your partner choose gestational surrogacy, you will typically undergo in vitro fertilization (IVF) to produce an embryo that is biologically yours, or is from selected donor egg and sperm. IVF involves extracting eggs and fertilizing them with sperm in a laboratory. After the egg is fertilized, the resulting embryo is transferred into your surrogate’s uterus through her cervix.
In a traditional surrogacy arrangement, also called surrogacy without egg donation, the surrogate is artificially inseminated with the father’s sperm. Because the surrogate uses her own eggs, the surrogate is the baby’s biological mother. When the baby is born, the surrogate gives up her parental rights. Typically, the baby is adopted by the father’s partner through a step-parent adoption process.
Traditional surrogacy is usually less costly than gestational surrogacy because IVF is not required, but for various legal reasons, is not as common or recommended as gestational surrogacy.
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