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Surrogacy: Taking a Practical and Personal Approach

View profile for Angela Killa
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Angela Killa, Director in the Family Law team at JCP Solicitors in Carmarthen, gives advice to families and potential surrogates considering the surrogacy route.

In the last 12 years, this area of family law has grown by 350%. So, if you are considering surrogacy as a means of becoming parents, or you wish to become someone’s surrogate, you are part of a growing family demographic who deserves expert legal advice and guidance.

In the UK, a surrogate and her spouse or civil partner are considered the legal parents of a child at birth. Intended parents must apply for a Parental Order, which is heard before the Court - making it highly advisable for those involved in surrogacy cases to appoint a Solicitor.

What does this mean for you? Whether you are a couple or an individual hoping to use a surrogate, or you are considering becoming a surrogate for someone else, it is vital you understand what this involves from the start. Make sure your Solicitor explains the complex law surrounding surrogacy in a clear, comprehensive manner so that you have a full picture of the process.

As intended parents, it is likely you have been through a lot of trauma before you consider surrogacy: many intended parents have faced fertility struggles and may even have dealt with the devastation of failed pregnancies or baby loss. For LGBTQ+ couples, there may have been additional challenges faced due to discrimination or prejudice. Therefore, empathy and consideration should form the basis of your Solicitor’s approach to your case.

To best support you and deal with your individual circumstances, your Solicitor will need to ask personal questions and gain a clear understanding of your case’s specific context. This will help your Solicitor to establish if there are any anomalies in the way matters have evolved prior to their legal involvement. Your Solicitor will act in your best interests, so it is important to be open and honest with them about your situation.

For example, intended parents may worry that the surrogate will change her mind or will not give her consent freely, whereas surrogates may also worry that the intended parents may change their mind(s) or make unreasonable demands during pregnancy.

If the surrogacy is taking place abroad, it is likely you will need advice from a legal specialist who practices in that country which can lead to additional costs. 

Whether you are the intended parent(s) or the prospective surrogate, make sure you ask if anything is unclear. For example, find out when and where you will be required to appear in Court: surrogacy cases are often heard before the High Court, though parental order proceedings are always heard in private. If requested, the Parental Order may be anonymously reported.

Overall, your Solicitor should support you and act in your best interest. Choose a Solicitor with whom you feel comfortable, as they will be by your side to reassure you throughout the process.

At JCP Solicitors, we are members of Resolution - a family law organisation advocating for a constructive approach to family issues. This means that we are guided by Resolution’s Good Practice Guide for Family Lawyers.

For support and guidance in Family Law, contact Angela Killa on 03333 208644 or email