A UK gay couple were nearly bankrupted after a surrogate withheld their twin daughters demanding more money.
Steven and Marc Winchester-Horscraft were left £43,000 ($AU82,000) in debt after a bitter legal battle ensued over the newborns (pictured).
At the time of the trial the twins, who were born premature, were in intensive care fighting for their lives.
The gay couple paid the surrogate’s pregnancy in full, amounting to almost £17,000. But, after the birth of the twins, the surrogate’s boyfriend demanded a further £3,000 ($AU5,700) before they would sign the parental order.
“One evening when we got home from visiting our girls, our surrogate’s partner came over to our house, and was asking for more money,” Steven explained on his GoFundMe page.
“They wanted another 3k which at this point we did not have.”
After being unable to afford the £3,000 the surrogate allegedly refused to put Steven—the biological father—on the birth certificate.
According to the couple, the surrogate refused to hand over her parental rights, renamed the twins and listed her boyfriend as father.
Surrogacy completing the gay couple’s family
Marc and Steven had already had another child due to surrogacy and were excited to complete their family.
But when the twins were born at 28 weeks, things started to go awry.
“Having our girls in NICU was only the very beginning of our long, excruciating nightmare,” Steven said.
It’s alleged after the couple refused to pay the further £3,000, the surrogate banned them from visiting their babies.
“Before the first hearing our surrogate called the hospital and [put] a ban on us seeing our girls,” Steven said.
“Imagine not being able to know anything about your sick, premature newborn children.
“At this point… we did not even know if they were alive.”
Surrogate gives twins to gay couple
Fearing they would lose their children, the couple desperately pursued legal action. This forced them to take out loans of around £26,000 ($AU49,000).
The gay couple endured several hearings before a DNA test finally confirmed Steven was the biological father. The girls were returned to Steven and Marc after six weeks.
The legal battle has, however, left the couple in financial and emotional distress. So, Steven started a GoFundMe page seeking donations to help pay off their debt.
“We are both nurses and have spent our working lives caring for others,” he said.
“I guess I am just hoping for some help from others in order to get us out of this awful situation,
“Due to our surrogate’s actions we have not been able to enjoy the time we have had with our girls.
“We would be eternally grateful to get any help at all.”
Steven and Marc have currently received over £4,400 in donations.
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