The legality of surrogacy in the USA can be considered somewhat a hot topic for debate. It doesn’t help that its legality vary per state. For anyone who is interested to give surrogacy a shot, it is critical to know the laws per state. This is helpful for both the intended parents and surrogate to learn the basics and the legalities surrounding this procedure.
The Basic Elements of Surrogacy Agreements
A legal professional with an extensive knowledge of Surrogacy laws will play a pivotal role as the agreement is created with the woman acting as the surrogate mother. It is also ideal to have independent or separate lawyers as well.
The conditions itemized below are important and must be discussed openly with your surrogate.
1. Names of parties involved, namely, the couple and the surrogate.
2. Must be of Legal Age.
3. Number of tries or attempts.
4. The method of achieving surrogate’s pregnancy, like “no sexual intercourse.”
5. Agreement to sustain and continue the pregnancy.
6. A declaration that the mother cannot conceive a child and sustain a pregnancy.
7. Statement of extensive medical and mental condition of the surrogate, as agreed.
8. Medical insurance for all parties involved in the placement of the embryo.
9. Modern technology or practices involving the placement of the embryo.
10. Close monitoring and checking of surrogate’s activities as well as medication ingested.
11. Agreement on regular prenatal medical care.
12. Restriction on surrogate’s activities that may be considered dangerous to the pregnancy and the birthing process.
13. Parental rights of the surrogate.
14. The presence of the couple during birth.
15. Legal or physical custody of the surrogate and the couple once the child is delivered.
16. Financial considerations before, during, and after pregnancy.
17. Confidentiality terms.
The items discussed above covers much of what is needed, but it would be better to take note of other factors that will help you prepare for cases that you may not be aware of. Being one step ahead is critical at this stage to avoid having problems that will not only affect you but also the child‘s best interests.
The surrogate’s compensation is considered to be one of the many challenges to expect when deciding to go for surrogacy. This answers the question on how much a surrogate gets paid for her services. Take note as well that whatever compensation a traditional or gestational surrogate gets, it is important to know that they are not an employee. Disqualification comes into play even if the surrogate does it for free, meaning, she is still not qualified under the definition of employee-employer relationship.
Gestational or Traditional Surrogacy
Traditional Surrogacy is the procedure wherein the surrogate goes through artificial insemination or IVF by mixing the surrogate’s eggs with the sperm of the donor. In this case, the surrogate has a genetic link to the child, which could be very risky because of the said genetic link.
Gestational Surrogacy on the other hand, is the procedure wherein the surrogate carries the pregnancy and delivers the child from an already fertilized embryo. The egg and sperm are from the couples who required the services of a surrogate. In this case, the surrogate serves only as a carrier for the child, and there is no genetic link involved.
Legal Matters Post-Birth Adoption
There are still a lot of legalities to check and agree upon prior to or after the child’s birth. In many states, legal courts allow the intended parent’s name directly indicated on the child’s birth certificate. In other states, the surrogate’s name is the one placed on the birth documents, which can be amended in the future when the order for the intended parent’s come and be listed.
Some states allow pre-birth order, however only under certain circumstances. The main point is to know and understand the laws of each state in terms of surrogacy.