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How do gestational carriers and surrogates differ?

On Behalf of | Mar 16, 2023 | Surrogacy Law |

Many people who want to start families in California have fertility issues. Fortunately, there are a few options available to have a child. One of them involves surrogacy, but there are two types: gestational carriers and traditional surrogates. This is how they differ.

Understanding gestational carriers

A gestational carrier is a woman who agrees to carry a baby for a couple or individual through a surrogacy agreement. The carrier doesn’t share any genetic link with the child because the intended parents use their own egg or sperm or both or rely on donor egg, sperm or embryo along with in vitro fertilization. This type of surrogacy is the most common and popular arrangement. The intended parents cover the costs of prenatal care and birth.

Depending on whether the intended parents use a carrier found through an agency or if they have a relative step up and volunteer to carry their child, there may be compensation involved. Gestational carriers acquired through agencies typically have surrogacy agreements that allow for them to be paid for their help. Meanwhile, if a family member or close friend of an intended parent agrees to carry the child, it’s known as compassionate surrogacy, which often doesn’t involve compensation.

Traditional surrogacy explained

Traditional surrogacy involves the use of a surrogate whose own egg is used when having a child for another person or couple. The intended father’s sperm or donor sperm is used along with intrauterine insemination to create the baby. There are a variety of legal implications involved with this type of surrogacy because the woman is biologically the child’s mother. As a result, this option is not as commonly used as gestational carriers.

For couples and individuals who have long wanted to have children, surrogacy might be the best option for achieving that dream. You might also develop a lasting relationship with your gestational carrier.