Below you'll find some commonly asked questions we get here at Dad.Be, and also some further links to other sites.
If there is any more information you need please don't hesitate to submit your quesiron below and we'll do our best to answer them here. If you'd like a private response please include your email.
Who How do I find a surrogate?
Remember it is illegal to advertise or pay for a surrogate in the UK. However there are several ways that you can meet a surrogate who will help you.
1) Surrogacy agencies:
They act as matching services, organising introductions for you but often have very costly fees running into the tens of thousands.
2) A surrogacy organisation:
Surrogacy advocacy groups can also operate as a social infrastructure to provide opportunities to meet surrogates and other intended parents both at live socials and online. They often have membership fees and require background checks and medical checks.
3) Independent groups online, usually private close groups found on Facebook.
4) A family member who has offered to carry your child for you.
The general ethos of surrogacy organisations and in the independent groups is that the woman must ask you if you would like her to be your surrogate. It must be her offer that you both must then mutually consent to. There is often a 'getting to know' period that must elapse so both parties feel the team will work before any treatment can happen.
Please check our Organisations page for links to some of these groups.
Will my surrogate keep my baby?
For many men who are new to surrogacy this can be a concern and yet it is very very rare. In fact surrogates would want to know that you intend to apply for a parental as they do not want to be left to raise your child. And so there must be trust on both sides. When you find the right surrogate you will realise that she is doing this to help you. Surrogates do not want to raise your children as their own as they have completed their families. Legally, a surrogate is the mother until a parental order is signed. But the intended parent (you) will care for the baby from birth. If in the worst case scenario, anything does go wrong the courts are there to rule in the best interests of the baby which in most cases is to be placed with it's parents.
How much does surrogacy cost?
The cost of a surrogacy journey in the UK can vary wildly between £11K and £50K+. This is because of the varying factors including:
a surrogate's expenses
whether you use a fertility clinic or do home inseminations
whether there are complications during pregnancy or birth
how many times and how long it takes to get pregnant
for further info on cost see our Finances page
Who Who goes on the birth certificate at birth?
Under UK law, the surrogate will be classed as the birth mother and will go on your baby's birth certificate. If the surrogate is married, her partner will be the second parent on the birth certificate. If she is single you will be the second parent. You will need to apply for a parental order within 6 months of the birth in order to extinguish the legal rights of the surrogate (and her husband if she is married) and remove her from the birth certificate.
Do surrogates and adoption/fostercare agencies prefer to work with couples?
There is no reason why a good adoption agency should prefer a couple over a single man. What they are looking for is if you can provide a stable and loving environment in which to reason the child. In terms of surrogacy, each surrogate is different and has specific reasons she will want to help someone become a parent. Some surrogates prefer to help couples and some prefer to help single IPs. For surrogates the most important thing is the connection they establish with the intended parent/s and the spark that goes into making a trusting team. Being single is certainly no barrier to finding a surrogate .
What is the difference between adoption and fostering?
When you adopt a child you extinguish the rights of the child's biological parents to parental responsibility and take full parental legal rights.
When you foster a child you are caring for them on behalf of your local authority, but you have no legal parental rights. You might still think of your role as a father figure and many foster children refer to their male foster parents as foster Dads.
What about childcare? How much is it and what am I entitled to as a single dad?
How do I make a benefit claim? What am I entitled to as a single parent?
I'm not able to use my own sperm. Can I still create an embryo with donor sperm?
Double donation is when you create embryos using donor sperm and donor eggs. If you are single and cannot use your own sperm then you will not be able to create an embryo. This is because it is illegal for embryos created through double donation to be placed into a surrogate. The only way an infertile man could create embryos is if he was in a relationship with another men and used that man's sperm or was in a relationship with a woman and used her eggs with donor sperm.
What leave am I entitled to as a single man when my baby is born?
If you are on the birth certificate, you would be eligible for shared parental leave. However if you chose shared parental leave this would mean that you would have to share the leave with your surrogate who may want to claim separate maternity leave and pay. It is more common for men to claim adoption leave and pay when using surrogacy to have their child. Adoption leave is paid at the statutory rate of 90% of full pay for the first 6 weeks dropping to 90% of your weekly wage or around £148 per week (whichever is the lower) for 33 weeks.Ask your employer for their adoption and surrogacy policy and check the government guidance here.