Surrogate Keeps Couple's Baby, Then Sues for Child Support

Family Matters on 04.13.11

Photo: iStockphoto/Thinkstock

Surrogacy may have worked out just fine for Hollywood parents including Sarah Jessica Parker, Nicole Kidman, and Elton John, but for one couple in England, it's been nothing but heartbreak: The surrogate they hired decided to keep the baby, and is now suing the father for child support.

After six miscarriages, says Jezebel, a couple referred to as Mr. and Mrs. W turned to surrogaacy, making an "informal agreement" with a woman they found on a website: She would donate her eggs and carry their baby. As the pregnancy progressed, the woman asked for more and more money and, three months before her due date, she texted the couple to say she was keeping the baby. 

England's Child Support Agency ruled that the mother could retain custody since she and the baby had a "clear attachment," and the couple gave up their rights to see the child, saying the emotional difficulties of having a relationship with the child would be too great. 

But now, the CSA has gone one step further, requiring the father of the eight-month-old girl to pay nearly £568 a month in child support to her mother. 

"The CSA has made the decision as if we were a couple who had broken up, but our situation is unique," said the father in The Daily Mail. "We were not having a baby together, we had agreed for her to carry a child for myself and my wife." 

The man says that he's convinced the surrogate was only trying to get money from them all along, and that he'd be willing to give the mother vouchers for food and supplies instead of cash. 

"If I need to pay £500 a month because otherwise the child will be living in poverty then that is another reason why the baby should be with us," he said. "We would have given her all the things she needed."

It's a messy situation for everyone involved, but what do you think: Is the father responsible for supporting the baby even though it wasn't part of the agreement?


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Tags: Adoption