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Altruistic Surrogacy – Everything you Need to Know

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Surrogacy is a type of fertility treatment where a third party (surrogate) will carry the baby of the intended couple until childbirth. Most times, this surrogate has no biological relations with the baby.

Couples choose surrogacy when the female partner has difficulties carrying the baby to full term. It may be due to old age or because she has some issues in her reproductive system.

There are two types of surrogacy: altruistic surrogacy and commercial surrogacy. In this article, we’ll discuss all we know about altruistic surrogacy.

What is Altruistic Surrogacy?

Altruistic means “being selfless and regard for the welfare of others.” 

Altruistic surrogacy is when the surrogate agrees to carry the child without any monetary benefits. In the agreement between the couple and the surrogate, she will get no monetary compensation. 

The Lok Sabha approved it in the new Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, stating that a heterosexual couple who did not have a child for five years could opt for altruistic surrogacy. 

Most times, the surrogate is a close friend or relative of the couple. However, even if the surrogate does not require monetary compensation, unforeseen circumstances or expenses may arise sometimes. 

Though they don’t receive compensation, all surrogates will receive reimbursements for medical and other pregnancy-related expenses during the period.

Difference Between Altruistic Surrogacy and Commercial Surrogacy

As we discussed, women who choose altruistic pregnancy receive no monetary compensation besides the medical costs they have during pregnancy. On the other hand, commercial pregnancy is when the woman is compensated for carrying the child of the intended parents. 

She is compensated for her time, energy, and physical and emotional strain she undergoes during pregnancy. each fertility hospital have scheme called surrogacy program will design a surrogate compensation package drafted according to each surrogate’s situation. 

The couple will have to take care of the surrogate’s entire expenses during the pregnancy, including the medical costs, legal expenses, travel expenses, and other expenses necessary during the pregnancy.

How Does Altruistic Surrogacy Work?

Altruistic surrogacy works the same way as commercial surrogacy. The eggs and sperm collected from the intended parents are fertilized and transferred into the surrogate’s uterus for further development. 

In commercial pregnancy, parents usually don’t know who their surrogate is. The hospital or an agency serves as a mediator between them. 

In Altruistic surrogacy, since the surrogate is usually a relative or friend, the intended parents know who their surrogate is. This is called “identified surrogacy.”

In identified surrogacy, the couple finds their surrogate match before working with a surrogacy professional. This eliminates the need for a mediator (hospital or agency) between them and their surrogate.

However, it might be necessary for the couple and surrogate to work closely with a surrogate professional as they will have more experience with the process. They will take the couple through the legal and medical requirements of the process.

Altruistic Surrogacy Cost

Surrogacy is a complex process and can be expensive. However, altruistic surrogacy is less expensive than commercial surrogacy as the monetary compensation for the surrogate is not necessary.

The cost of altruistic surrogacy depends on several factors, including

Other than the above, the amount a couple may spend on the treatment can also depend on factors like



Legal Aspects of Altruistic Surrogacy

The legal process a couple must go through during altruistic surrogacy is almost the same as commercial surrogacy. The only difference is that there won’t be any pre-determined financial details regarding the surrogate’s compensation.

The couple and the surrogate should come to an agreement and lay out a contract called the Gestational Surrogacy Agreement (GSA). Though the surrogate agrees to this out of kindness, the procedure may have potential risks. Couples should consider every aspect carefully before starting it. 

Considering Altruistic Surrogacy

For couples intending to undergo surrogacy, altruistic surrogacy can be a great option for them. They can stay with the surrogate every step of the way and ensure she and the baby stay safe and healthy. 

This is a privilege that couples choosing commercial surrogacy can’t have. They can’t contact the surrogate during pregnancy or after that. They can only communicate through the agency. 

It is also a cost-effective option for the parents. However, the intended parents must discuss all the medical and legal matters with the surrogate before starting the treatment. 


Altruistic surrogacy is similar to other types of surrogacy in that the surrogate is not paid directly. The only payment required for altruistic surrogacy is insurance coverage for the surrogate and medical and other pregnancy-related expenditures.

You must also get the consent of the family member or friend who you wish to be your surrogate. At the end of the day, all must be happy. So, take every step carefully. 


Commercial surrogacy is illegal in India. However, altruistic surrogacy is permissible by the Surrogacy (Regulation) Act of 2021. According to this act, the surrogate will not get any other monetary benefits besides medical and other necessary expenses.

Yes, if the couple opts for gestational surrogacy, the baby can be biologically related to them as the procedure involves using their own sperm and eggs. 

However, if they use traditional surrogacy or donor eggs or sperm, the baby may not be biologically related to one or both parents.

The surrogate also has legal requirements to become eligible for surrogacy in India. She must have a child of her own, be married, and be between the ages of 25 and 35. Additionally, she should be a first-time surrogate. She must also receive a psychiatrist’s certification of mental fitness.

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