Understanding Altruistic Surrogacy: Criteria and Eligibility

Understanding Altruistic Surrogacy: Criteria and Eligibility

Altruistic surrogacy offers a compassionate solution for individuals and couples unable to conceive or carry a pregnancy to term. Unlike commercial surrogacy, this arrangement focuses on the surrogate’s goodwill, with compensation limited to covering pregnancy-related expenses. Whether you’re considering altruistic surrogacy as an intended parent or as a potential surrogate, understanding the eligibility criteria and legal implications is crucial. This blog will guide you through the essential aspects of altruistic surrogacy, ensuring you are well-informed about this selfless and rewarding journey.

“Understanding Altruistic Surrogacy: Criteria and Eligibility”

Altruistic surrogacy treatment is a type of surrogacy arrangement where the surrogate mother does not receive any financial compensation beyond reimbursement for reasonable expenses related to the pregnancy and birth. This is in contrast to commercial surrogacy, where the surrogate receives a fee for her services.

Key Features of Altruistic Surrogacy:

  1. Non-Commercial: The surrogate does not profit financially; she is typically compensated only for out-of-pocket expenses such as medical costs, travel, maternity clothing, and loss of earnings during the pregnancy.
  2. Motivations: The surrogate is usually motivated by altruistic reasons, often to help a close friend or family member who cannot conceive or carry a pregnancy to term.
Must Read –  Altruistic Surrogacy: Definition, Procedures, and FAQs

Eligibility and Criteria for Altruistic Surrogacy:

Who Can Opt for Altruistic Surrogacy?

  1. Intended Parents:
    • Infertile Couples: Couples who are unable to conceive or carry a pregnancy due to medical reasons.
    • Single Parents: Single women who wish to have a child.
  2. Surrogates:
    • Women who have had at least one successful pregnancy and delivery, indicating they understand the medical and emotional aspects of pregnancy.
    • Surrogates are often friends or relatives of the intended parents, but this is not a strict requirement.

Criteria for Intended Parents:

  1. Medical Evidence: Proof of infertility or medical conditions that make pregnancy impossible or risky.
  2. Background Checks: Psychological and background checks to ensure they are fit to parent.
  3. Legal Clearance: Understanding and agreeing to the legal implications of the surrogacy arrangement, often through legal counseling.
  4. Financial Stability: Ability to cover the surrogate’s pregnancy-related expenses.

Criteria for Surrogates:

  1. Health Requirements: Must be in good physical and mental health, with no history of pregnancy complications.
  2. Age: Typically between 21 and 35 years old, though specific requirements may vary.
  3. Lifestyle: Non-smoker, no substance abuse, and generally leading a healthy lifestyle.
  4. Psychological Assessment: Must undergo psychological evaluation to ensure she is emotionally prepared for surrogacy and understands the implications.
  5. Support System: Having a strong personal support system, such as family or friends, to help during the surrogacy process.
  6. Informed Consent: Fully understands and consents to the surrogacy agreement, including the legal and medical procedures involved.

Legal and Ethical Considerations:

  • Legal Framework: Varies significantly by country and state. Some places have stringent laws regulating or prohibiting surrogacy.
  • Ethical Considerations: Focus on the welfare of the surrogate and the child, ensuring that the surrogate is not exploited and that the intended parents are suitable to raise a child.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Altruistic Surrogacy

1. What is altruistic surrogacy?
Altruistic surrogacy is a surrogacy arrangement where the surrogate mother receives no financial compensation beyond reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred during pregnancy and childbirth.

2. Who can be an intended parent in an altruistic surrogacy arrangement?
A. Intended parents can include:

  • Infertile couples who cannot conceive naturally.
  • Same-sex couples, especially male couples.
  • Single individuals desiring to have a child.

3. Who can become a surrogate mother?
A. To become a surrogate mother, a woman generally needs to:

  • Be between 21 and 40 years old.
  • Have had at least one successful pregnancy and delivery.
  • Be in good physical and mental health.
  • Pass psychological and medical evaluations.

4. What expenses are covered for the surrogate in an altruistic surrogacy?
A. Expenses typically covered include:

  • Medical costs related to the pregnancy and birth.
  • Travel expenses for medical appointments.
  • Maternity clothing.
  • Lost wages due to pregnancy-related leave.

5. What legal considerations are involved in altruistic surrogacy?
A. Legal considerations include:

  • Surrogacy agreements outlining the responsibilities and rights of all parties.
  • Ensuring the surrogate’s informed consent.
  • Complying with local surrogacy laws, which vary widely.

6. What are the ethical considerations in altruistic surrogacy?
A. Ethical considerations focus on:

  • Non-exploitation of the surrogate.
  • Ensuring the welfare of the child.
  • Providing psychological support for the surrogate.

7. How do intended parents and surrogates find each other?
A. Intended parents and surrogates often connect through:

  • Personal networks (friends or family).
  • Support groups and online communities.

8. How long does the altruistic surrogacy process take?
A. The process can take 1-2 years, including:

  • Matching with a surrogate.
  • Completing legal agreements.
  • Undergoing medical procedures.
  • The pregnancy itself.

9.  Is altruistic surrogacy legal everywhere?
A. No, the legality of altruistic surrogacy varies by country and even by region within countries. It is important to consult local laws and potentially seek legal advice

10. What are the psychological impacts of altruistic surrogacy on the surrogate?
A. Surrogates may experience a range of emotions, including:

  • Fulfillment and joy from helping a family.
  • Potential emotional challenges post-birth.
  • Importance of ongoing psychological support.


Altruistic surrogacy is designed to be a compassionate and supportive arrangement, prioritizing the well-being of all parties involved, especially the surrogate and the future child.

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