The theme of National Surrogacy Week 2022 (1-7 August 2022) is, ‘Children of Surrogacy’.
“Surrogacy Week is proud to hear from both the children born through surrogacy and the children of surrogates. Their voice should always remain the loudest, most important one when discussing surrogacy”. Surrogacyweek.co.uk
There can be many reasons that a family has to use a surrogate. These can range from having had cancer, immunology issues, mothers’ health issues or men in a relationship.
To carry a child for a couple who are unable to themselves is truly one of the most selfless acts and thanks to the thousands of surrogates around the world, many babies have been able to be born and families completed. In 2021, 436 children were born via surrogacy in the UK and over the last 10 years, 5,002 children have been born via surrogates.(Statistics obtained from surrogacyweek.co.uk)
What are the current legal guidelines surrounding surrogacy in the UK?
In the UK, surrogates are not allowed to advertise their services as a surrogate. Instead, surrogates may be found through legitimate organisations. Surrogates are allowed to be paid ‘reasonable expenses’ and this is an agreement that the surrogate and intended parents make together.
Your surrogacy agreement is not legally binding, so you have to trust one another to honour what you have both agreed.
UK legal parenthood states that after the birth of the baby, the surrogate is the legal parent. The intended parents then have to apply for a ‘parental order’, which requires the surrogate’s consent. And although extremely rare, this does mean that until the parental order is granted, the surrogate could choose to keep the baby.
Where do I find surrogates?
Most fertility clinics will have an accredited surrogacy company whom they work alongside. At Harley Street fertility Clinic we are proud to have partnered with Brilliant Beginnings and Extraordinary Conceptions. Hilary Smith, International Client Relations Expert at Extraordinary Conceptions, spoke to us recently about their surrogacy program, providing useful insights into their new hybrid program. Read the story here. Extraordinary Conceptions found the amazing Julie, whose surrogacy journey was blogged on HSFC website.
Most recently, our HSFC family members and patients, Luke and Nathan used a surrogate to welcome adorable baby Euan. We were so thrilled that we could help them become the family they have always dreamed of. To discover more about Luke and Nathan’s journey, click here.
To learn more about surrogacy please visit our page.