Your Guide to Choosing a Surrogacy Agency
You’ve done the research, you’ve had the discussion with your partner, and you’ve made the decision: you’re going to pursue surrogacy! Whether you’re applying to become a surrogate mother or intended parents building your family, you’re about to take on one the greatest adventures of your life.
Fortunately, you don’t have to do it alone. A reputable surrogacy agency will be there to help you get started and see you through until the baby is born. There is no shortage of options available, and simply choosing a surrogacy agency can feel like one more overwhelming task in a never-ending list of things to do.
Here are 3 things to consider so that your surrogacy journey is as smooth as possible.
1. Does location matter?
Does the location of a US surrogacy agency matter?
In a word, no.
Surrogacy laws by state can vary, so as long as the gestational carrier lives in a surrogacy friendly state, the team of professionals can work with you from anywhere. If you are local, they will likely invite you to come to their office for things like initial meetings with the staff, the match meeting with your gestational carrier or support groups.
If you don’t live close, some items can be completed through a local IVF clinic instead. Either way, the agency will see to it that all i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed as the process moves forward.
2. What about international surrogacy agencies?
If the location of your surrogacy agency doesn’t matter, it might seem that working with an agency on the other side of the world is just as good of an option. Some intended parents find the lower price tag very appealing, but a word of caution: international surrogacy increases health, legal, financial and even political risks.
It’s much more difficult to ensure prescreening or monitoring of the environment – from the IVF clinic to the surrogate’s living conditions – from abroad. In the US, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine holds all assisted reproductive technology professionals to certain regulations that may not be required elsewhere.
The same goes for legal protections and political circumstances that may cause instability for your surrogacy journey. In the end, trying to assuage these risks may end up costing more than domestic surrogacy at best – and at worst, could derail the entire process.
3. What are the benefits of a surrogacy agency?
It’s understandable that you will have many questions as you embark on your surrogacy journey. Choosing a reputable, competent domestic agency should be your first step.
One of the benefits of an agency is that you don’t have to have all of the answers! You’ll have a team of people alongside you and your gestational carrier to help guide you. You should, however, consider a few questions at the start:
- How old is the agency?
- Do they have a professional, compassionate staff?
- Is there an established business structure?
- Are there comprehensive services?
- What is the screening process?
- Is there an individualized strategy?
For more details about what to look for when choosing a surrogacy agency, check out how ConceiveAbilities is setting the bar for ethics and standards in the industry. If you have additional questions about our program, we look forward to assisting you!