Understanding the risks and the benefits of surrogacy
According to the National Center for Health Statistics, 6.9 million women received some type of infertility treatment between the years 2011 and 2013. That number is expected to be higher in more recent years. It’s not surprising that there is also a high demand for surrogacy services. However, since there is no federal oversight for surrogacy, there is no regulation. As a result, dishonest businesses or individuals try to cash in. Surrogacy has a high success rate. However, those who are considering this option should evaluate surrogacy risks and benefits before leaping into the process.
Professional agencies like the Center for Surrogate Parenting (cSP) have 36 years of experience. CSP can be easily recognized as a legitimate provider of surrogacy services. Here are some areas to research and consider when choosing surrogacy as an option.
For those who use a family member or friend as a surrogate, the independent surrogacy approach may work well. However, most surrogacy experts do not suggest the independent approach for the inexperienced. Many problems can arise for those people.
An agency protects the interests of both the surrogate and the intended parent or parents. In an independent surrogacy, there is no safety net should the surrogate change her mind or if the parents back out.
Online agencies – The risk and benefits of surrogacy
If you conduct an online search for surrogate mothers, you’ll find thousands of results. Some are legitimate agencies, but many are not. For those who desperately want to become a parent, risking their life savings seems to be a small price to pay to finally hold their own baby in their arms. Sadly, some of these people experience financial ruined and emotional trauma following a scam. A potential agency should be able to answer questions about costs, screenings, surrogacy requirements, and legalities. They should note all legal and financial arrangements in a legally binding contract that is signed by all parties. At CSP, we welcome questions about surrogacy, our screening process, and other pertinent information.
Finding a match
It’s important to find the right match when considering the risks and benefits of surrogacy. A surrogate mother should have the option of choosing the parents. Parents must feel secure in the knowledge that the surrogate mother will care for their child during the pregnancy.
Prescreening potential parents is important so there is no question that they intend to honor their legal and emotional obligations toward the surrogacy. The surrogate mother should have the opportunity to meet with the parents and ask personal questions. Being comfortable and feeling a connection is an important part of the matching process. In many cases, the bonds formed during the surrogacy process become long term relationships. Please read some of our letters.
Surrogacy is uncharted territory when it comes to laws governing the industry. Before entering an agreement with an agency, all parties should be clear on any state laws and all stipulations of the contract before signing.
- Since there are no federal laws that can be used to guide surrogacy arrangements, state surrogacy laws prevail. The laws applied to the surrogacy arrangement fall under the statutes of the state the surrogate resides in.
- Legal representation is important for both the surrogate and the parents to oversee and address issues concerning insurance, compensation, and other legalities.
- Additionally, contracts should have stipulations addressing any medical or developmental complications discovered in the unborn child or divorce of the intended parents. In some cases, there are stipulations in the contract calling for an end to the pregnancy under specific situations.
- Under the Assisted Human Reproductive Act in Canada it is illegal to pay a surrogate or advertise to arrange for services of a surrogate. Furthermore, there are a number of European nations who have similar, strict surrogacy laws, so couples outside of the U.S. may choose to enter a surrogacy arrangement here.
The surrogacy process includes all aspects of the pregnancy, birth, and legal rights of both the surrogate mother and the intended parents. Every surrogacy experience is different, so the chance of unique situation arising is possible as well. Our experience over three decades and thousands of happy new families has provided us the expertise to successfully guide parents through the surrogacy process. Contact us to learn more from CSP about the miracle and the joy of surrogate parenting.