Episode 11 Transcript
Episode 11. Surrogacy Laws: What You Need to Know Before Starting Your Journey

ntroduction

Welcome to Fertility Café. Today’s episode is all about surrogacy law in the United States and abroad. Now, before your eyes glaze over and you head to the next podcast in your queue, let me assure you: I won’t be reciting state and federal statutes that will bore you to death. But what I will cover is what you need to know about how to avoid legal troubles when pursuing surrogacy along with the particulars of laws in the US and abroad.

I’ll tackle questions like: What makes Ukraine such an attractive destination for surrogacy, and what does Gloria Steinem have to do with all this? Where in the world can LGBTQ couples safely and legally become parents via surrogacy, and why did it take nineteen years for one couple to finally be recognized as the legal parents for their twin daughters?

If you’re thinking about being a surrogate or becoming a parent via surrogacy, this episode is a must-listen! When it comes to the legalities of parenthood using a surrogate, you do NOT want to cut any corners. Surrogacy law is at once complex, fascinating and often inconsistent depending on what country, state, or even county you live in.

Let’s get started! There’s a lot to cover here, so we’ll just dive right in.

Purpose behind laws on surrogacy

Let me to start with a broad view of just how varied laws on gestational surrogacy can be, and how complex the issues can be. Allow me to paint you a picture of the extremes.

At one extreme, people who are 100% against surrogacy believe that it’s the equivalent of paying someone for an organ on the black market. They fear that women will be exploited, will agree to carry a child out of financial desperation, and will be used by wealthy families who care little about the inherent risks involved with surrogacy. Fetuses will become property to be fought over in courts and the miracle of birth will be reduced to a commercial transaction.

Let’s just clear the air right off the bat: this is NOT how ethical surrogacy goes. Not in the United States, not in Europe, and rarely in other parts of the world, at least today in the year 2020.

Any surrogacy law should (and typically does) prevent this nightmare scenario at all costs. Problems do arise in countries where there is NO regulation at all, which is something all intended parents need to be aware of when choosing where to pursue surrogacy.
In a country with a free-for-all type of situation, all sorts of problems can (and have) developed. Unchecked commercialization of surrogacy quickly makes the process become more about the money than the lives involved.

We’ll take a look later in the episode, specifically about the history of surrogacy in India, where lack of regulation became such a problem that the pendulum swung all the way to the other extreme—with the government essentially outlawing surrogacy altogether.

Now, as I said earlier, there are two extremes to this issue. The other extreme, in my opinion, is not necessarily an outright ban on gestational surrogacy, although this is definitely problematic. What I see most often is poorly thought out or overtly discriminatory regulation.

For example, too much regulation can, and does, hinder amazing people from becoming parents via surrogacy. Many countries and states make it impossible or extremely difficult for same-sex or unmarried couples, or for individual intended parents to enter into surrogacy agreements. Some countries, like the UK and Australia, outlaw compensated surrogacy, meaning an intended parent must find a compassionate or altruistic surrogate. While not impossible, this law makes a successful surrogacy journey much more difficult to achieve and often sends intended parents searching for surrogates abroad at great expense and increased risk.

All of this leaves us asking, what’s the middle ground? I believe the answer lies in clear, comprehensive laws that answer three basic questions about gestational surrogacy: Is it safe? Is it legal? Is it ethical?

Any law regulating surrogacy must first and foremost protect the women who choose to become surrogates. There are inherent risks with any pregnancy, and when you add in the possibility of failed IVF cycles, multiple viable fetuses, and the emotional strain surrogacy can take on someone, this becomes a very big ask. The women who are drawn to surrogacy are unique in their selfless generosity and are very literally carrying another parent’s hopes and dreams. Surrogacy laws must protect these women to the greatest extent possible, while also honoring the rights of the intended parents.

Shortly, I’ll talk about the laws that are currently in place that protect surrogates, and conversely, how a lack of legal protections can result in the worst possible outcome: exploitation.

Big issues

Before we dive into the specifics of case law and statutes in the United States and abroad, I’d like to outline the basic structure of a legal, ethical surrogacy arrangement.

Just thinking about the legalities behind surrogacy can make your mind swim with questions and worries: what if the surrogate suddenly decides to keep the baby? What if her life is at risk and she chooses to terminate the pregnancy at the advice of her doctor? What if the baby has a high likelihood of being born with a debilitating disease or disability? Can the intended parents ask the surrogate to terminate that pregnancy? Can she refuse? What if the intended parents break up at some point in the often lengthy process? Who gets custody when the child is born?

It’s A LOT to consider. Can you even imagine trying to navigate all this without clear legal guidelines in place and a skilled attorney in your corner? It would be really, really messy, if not totally impossible.

Here’s the good news, though: gestational surrogacy has become a common practice in many countries, and there ARE legal regulations in many places that make sense and protect all parties involved. There are also many people who have gone before you, paving the way with case law, ethics committees and legal precedents.

Also just to touch on real quick, about surrogates trying to keep the baby. That is not a common practice. There are more cases of parents not coming back for their children, then there are surrogates trying to keep someone’s child. Further, not trying to be insensitive, but these women who choose to become surrogates, already have their own children and can have more children if they choose. It would not behoove them to keep someone else’s child and deal with the nightmare that would come with that.

Ok. Let’s look at the main areas where you’ll need legal protection during a surrogacy journey. First, there’s the big one: your contractual surrogacy agreement. Also known as the GSA, or the Gestational Surrogacy Agreement, this is a legally binding contract that outlines all expectations and obligations between the gestational surrogate and the intended parents.

This agreement should NEVER be one-sided: it must take the rights of all parties into equal consideration. Both intended parents and surrogates should have their own legal representation to help draft, review, and execute the contract.

A typical surrogacy agreement covers several issues. This isn’t a place to cut corners or a time to use a template you found on the internet. The GSA is highly specific, very extensive, and extremely important. We recommend finding an attorney who is experienced in family formation reproductive law and who has several GSAs under his or her belt.

This is going to be a BIG document, with lots to cover, so buckle up for a while.

Your contract needs to include the type of medical procedures agreed upon — will you be using frozen or fresh embryos, from donors or from the intended parents? How many embryos will be implanted, and how many different attempts are all parties willing to try? If there is an unfortunate event like a miscarriage or stillbirth, will there be another attempt at pregnancy? You’ll also need to agree on what to do in case you’re presented with a need to terminate the pregnancy for a variety of reasons – if the surrogate’s life is in danger, if the baby is not viable or highly unlikely to survive, if there’s a known disability… Questions no one wants to think about, but these are absolutely vital answers to have before you’re faced with a heart-wrenching decision.

Your GSA should also cover the type and frequency of mental health counseling for everyone, where the birth will take place, what will happen if the intended parents divorce or separate, or God forbid, die during the process.

Beyond all this, you’ll of course have to account for the financial side of surrogacy.

A surrogacy contract MUST outline the exact nature of compensation for your surrogate. What, specifically, will the intended parents pay for? This may sometimes be dictated by local or state laws, at least in the US, which is yet another reason to have skilled legal counsel at the helm here. Some states or countries make it illegal to compensate a surrogate for anything but related expenses; others allow you to pay a fee for the surrogate’s time and commitment.

Typical types of compensation include payment of direct and related medical expenses, but they can also include miscellaneous expenses like a monthly allowance, travel reimbursement, living expenses or the cost of lost wages.

A solid legal contract will get very specific about the type, amount, frequency and nature of payments expected from the IPs to the surrogate. It should also outline what happens if financial obligations are not met.

A quick side note: if handling the financial side of things seems like a huge headache, there are escrow companies out there that can hold and distribute money for you. We always recommend going this route, as it adds a major layer of protection for all parties. Anything you can do to minimize squabbling over a missed payment or an allowed vs. disallowed expense is well worth it, in my experience.

The last part of any surrogacy contract should outline social expectations between the intended parents, the surrogate, and the child. Will there be frequent communication during the pregnancy? Will the intended parents attend prenatal appointments or be present at the birth? There’s also the question of contact after the child is born – will there be any kind of relationship, or will you wish each other well and go your separate ways? Lots and lots to think about.

As we dive into the nitty gritty of everything involved in a safe, legal, and ethical surrogacy, I hope you can see the importance of having the right legal professional in your corner.

And we haven’t even gotten to the question of legal parenthood yet! Let’s tackle that one next.
Like most legal issues, this one is going to depend on where the child is born and will vary wildly based on the local regulations. In most surrogacy-friendly localities, the intended parents can be named as the child’s legal parents either pre-birth or post-birth. Some state laws will allow you to establish parentage of your child before they are even born. This is known as a “pre-birth order. Pre-birth orders usually mean the gestational surrogate’s name won’t appear on the birth certificate. Your lawyer can help you take care of all of that prior to delivery.

Not all states allow you to file a pre-birth order early; some require you to wait until after the baby is born. This is known as “post-birth orders,” and its typically filed immediately after the birth of the baby.

And to clarify, even in cases where you file a pre-birth order, it will not become effective until after the baby is born — just like a post-birth order. The processes for both orders are similar, so the differences between pre-birth and post-birth orders (besides the time of filing) are rather insignificant.

In some situations, some states may not allow you to complete either a pre-birth or post-birth order and you must complete an adoption. It could be a second parent adoption or a single parent adoption.

Again, the law in the state in which the child will be born will determine with how the order will be recognized. That’s why it’s vital to understand how laws can vary and to ensure you have legal counsel that knows what they are doing. Your attorney will help you determine what course of action you need to take.

Now that we’ve had a look at just some of the legal and ethical issues to consider with gestational surrogacy, it’s time to talk specifics.

Where can you safely and legally have a successful surrogacy journey?

Again, let’s start with a broad view. The most frequently cited surrogacy-friendly countries today include Ukraine, Colombia, Georgia, Canada, and the United States. These are usually listed among good options for surrogacy because there are legal regulations in place for both international and domestic surrogacy arrangements. However, each location comes with its own pros and cons.

Surrogacy is essentially outlawed in most of Western Europe, and it is becoming increasingly difficult for surrogacy to be possible in Asian countries.

We’ll look at each of these areas in more detail as we continue. For now, let’s look at the variety of surrogacy laws in the United States.

United States

The first thing to establish here is that there is no federal law about surrogacy in the United States. This means by and large, the decisions are left up to state and sometimes local governments and court systems.

When legal questions about surrogacy have reached the federal court level, it almost always falls back to the Gestational Surrogacy Agreement as regulated by contract law. One more reason to make sure that document is airtight and drafted by a skilled lawyer.

Regarding surrogacy in the US, you’ll often hear people refer to states as either surrogacy-friendly or non-surrogacy friendly. There are also some in-between states, and the range of what’s considered friendly vs not, can be quite large.

Surrogacy-Friendly States

The most surrogacy friendly states are California, Connecticut, Delaware, DC, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Nevada, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington, are favorable to surrogacy. These states have legislation on the books to protect the rights of surrogates and intended parents, or their courts have consistently and fairly enforced surrogacy agreements.

California, for example, has some of the most comprehensive and straight-forward regulations on surrogacy in the US. There are protections and provisions in place to allow and regulate commercial, or compensated surrogacy, and there are no roadblocks to same-sex and LGBTQ individuals becoming parents via surrogacy.

Nevada recently rose to the top of the surrogacy-friendly pack with a new law promising maternity coverage for surrogates. In the US, insurance companies often deny maternity coverage for women acting as gestational surrogates, which means the intended parents are required to foot the bill for private insurance or self-pay. Nevada’s 2019 law is the first of its kind, and it makes the state all the more attractive for people seeking an ideal surrogacy arrangement.

The other surrogacy friendly states I mentioned have varying degrees of protections and their own unique set of rules to abide by, so definitely check with a skilled attorney.

And by the way: as you’re searching for a surrogate, keep in mind that her location, as in the place where she will deliver the baby, will be what determines which state or locality has jurisdiction.

Non-Surrogacy Friendly States

There are a handful of states in the US where surrogacy is a no-go.
Louisiana, Michigan, and Nebraska make it very difficult if not impossible to have a valid surrogacy agreement.

In Louisiana, for example, gestational surrogacy is technically legal under very specific circumstances. Only heterosexual, married couples who use their own egg and sperm are allowed to enter into legal surrogacy agreements. And all parties must be residents of the state. It also must be an altruistic or compassionate surrogacy case. Plus you must have a court approval prior to having an embryo transfer.

Michigan and Nebraska currently prohibit surrogacy arrangements with specific laws. Both states make all compensated surrogacy agreements void and unenforceable, and both have provisions to fine and or criminalize people who violate the law.

I also wanted to bring up New York cases as it has been an extremely interesting state to watch on this issue. There are some positive changes happening effective Feb of 2021, but for now, compensated surrogacy is still banned. We’ll discuss some details of the current battle over surrogacy a little bit later.

Everywhere Else

If you’re keeping count, you probably notice there’s a large number of US states I haven’t mentioned. That’s because the rest of the states fall into a gray zone of “it depends.”

In my home state of Georgia, for example, there are simply no laws on the books about surrogacy one way or another. So by default, it’s allowed. Courts will typically grant pre-birth orders of parentage with little hesitation, as long as there’s a solid contract in place. This is fairly typical for the states that fall into the in-between of friendly vs. non-friendly designations.

Other states make it difficult for same-sex couples or unmarried individuals to obtain a pre-birth order, instead requiring a post-birth order or even an adoption process. Before you commit to working with a particular surrogate, you need to do your homework on the laws in her state.

Baby M & New York as a Case Study

Let’s go back to New York for a bit. As I mentioned earlier, it’s been one to watch for quite awhile now. Many people are surprised to learn that one of the more progressive states in America is also one of only a few that have an outright ban on compensated surrogacy. After all, surrogacy is often seen as one of the best options for same-sex or LGBTQ individuals to become parents, so why wouldn’t a blue state like New York allow it with common sense regulations, as California does?

The answer to that is complicated, but it’s worth diving into more here. There’s some important history behind the ban and a very strange mix of loud anti-surrogacy voices.

If you’ve done much research at all about surrogacy, and specifically about the ethics behind it, you’ve probably heard of the infamous Baby M case. If not, I’ll summarize for you, because it was the impetus for New York’s ban on surrogacy.

The basics of the case was that Mary Beth Whitehead agreed to be a traditional surrogate for a married couple, the Stens, who could not conceive on their own. When the baby was born, in 1987, Mary Beth refused to give the baby to the intended parents, even though the baby was the genetic child of the intended father. After a literal back-and-forth, with Mary Beth and her husband at one point kidnapping the baby from the Sterns, the families took it to court. A lengthy and sensational court battle ensued, and ultimately Stern was awarded custody with Mary Beth having visitation rights. The negative attention this all attracted caused a public outcry, resulting in surrogacy being banned in several states.

Though still cited as a downside to surrogacy, this case actually has little to do with what surrogacy looks like in the 21st century.

You see, Mary Beth and the parents had entered into a traditional surrogacy arrangement – meaning the surrogate’s egg and the intended father’s sperm were used to conceive the baby. This is FAR less common today. With advances in assisted reproductive technology, it’s rare to find a fertility clinic that will recommend going this route.

In 1988 when the New York ban was first enacted, and again in 2019 when this new campaign to end the ban was launched, conservative religious groups rallied to keep surrogacy illegal for a variety of reasons.

These groups had a rather surprising ally in their 2019 fight — feminist advocates, led by Gloria Steinem, fought very vocally against legalizing surrogacy in New York. Steinem made waves when she wrote a letter claiming that compensated surrogacy amounts to exploitation.

While I, and others in the alternative family building industry, vehemently disagree with her premise, I have to admit that her fears don’t come from pure fantasy.

Historically, yes, women HAVE been exploited and have turned to surrogacy out of financial desperation. This is especially true in developing countries. In fact, we will look at some examples together very shortly.

The vehement disagreement I and others in my industry have with her take is that with proper regulations and solid laws, exploitation and “wombs for rent” become less likely than ever. On the other hand, when there is no regulation, there’s a void created that lets under-the-table arrangements fester and allows people to be taken advantage of.

International Surrogacy

Now that we have a pretty good understanding of what surrogacy law in the US looks like, let’s turn our focus to international surrogacy.

I’d like to start with a close look at surrogacy in India. As with New York, India has become something of a case study in how laws, or the lack thereof, can make a huge difference in the ethics and safety of surrogacy.

Not that long ago, India was viewed as the worldwide hub for commercial surrogacy. Intended parents would fly from all over the world to find a surrogacy match, and from an outsider’s casual glance, Indian women seemed eager to volunteer to carry babies in exchange for adequate compensation.

The problem? Lack of regulation and high rates of poverty created the perfect environment for exploitation — exactly the kind of situation Gloria Steinem warned of in her letter.

An article in the Indian Journal of Community Medicine from 2011 described the situation of Indian surrogates this way:

“Due to lack of proper legislation, both surrogate mothers and intended parents are exploited and profit is earned by middlemen and commercial agencies. There is no transparency in the whole system, and the chance of getting involved in legal problems is there due to unpredictable regulations governing surrogacy in India.

The poor, illiterate women of rural backgrounds are often persuaded into surrogacy by their spouse or middlemen. These women have no right to make decisions regarding their own body and life. In India, there is no provision of psychological screening or legal counseling, which is mandatory in the USA. After recruitment by commercial agencies, these women are shifted into hostels for the whole duration of pregnancy on the pretext of prenatal care. The real motive is to guard them and to avoid any social stigma of being outcast by their community.

The worst part is that in the case of an unfavorable outcome of pregnancy, a miscarriage or stillbirth, for example, they are unlikely to be paid, and there is no provision of insurance or post-pregnancy medical and psychiatric support for them.”

A complete nightmare scenario. This unregulated commercial surrogacy industry became such a problem that in 2013, the Indian government finally decided to make commercial surrogacy all but impossible, essentially shutting down what was once an almost 3 billion dollar industry.

Today, it’s illegal for foreign intended parents to pursue surrogacy in India. The only people who can legally enter into a surrogacy agreement are Indian parents who have been married for at least five years and can prove their infertility with a doctor’s confirmation.

The former draw to India — its low cost and prevalence of “willing” surrogates — is also what made the country such a problematic breeding ground for exploitation.

Today many other Asian countries are following suit and clamping down on the commercial surrogacy industry, for many of the same reasons. Thailand, Nepal and Cambodia have all banned surrogacy in the past few years.

It bears highlighting that the root cause of exploitation in most cases is money. Women living in poverty are desperate for income; wealthy intended parents have money to offer; middlemen step in to pressure participation for all the wrong reasons; the government fails to intervene and regulate.

I want to be very clear about something here: safe, legal, ethical surrogacy and financial desperation or poverty DO NOT mix. It’s why here in the States, and in countries with well regulated surrogacy laws, surrogates must be financially stable before qualifying to be a surrogate.

Are they motivated by the monetary compensation at all? Of course — many of our own surrogates are able to fulfill incredible financial goals because of their choice. Dream family vacations, a down payment on their forever house, an educational fund for their children.

However, surrogate compensation should NEVER be the primary means of putting food on the table or clothing one’s own family. And the money should never be the primary motivation for a woman to become a surrogate. First and foremost, surrogacy is a calling and an act of selfless service to others.

That being said, it’s important to recognize how the issue of compensated surrogacy can easily turn exploitative in developing countries where poverty is widespread.

So where can intended parents turn to find safe, legal, and ethical surrogacy options?
It depends. If you are in a married, heterosexual relationship, you will have several more options. If you are an LGQTQ couple or individual, you’re limited to only a handful of places to turn. Hopefully these options will widen in the not-so-distant future, but for now let’s focus on what is possible.

For heterosexual couples, it’s becoming common to seek surrogacy in Eastern Europe. Several countries in this region have regulated and legalized commercial surrogacy.

Ukraine is widely considered to be one of the most popular, affordable options for international surrogacy. In general, the country has a supportive and robust legal framework, and it offers European standards of medical care, a stable democracy, and regulations that protect both surrogated and intended parents. All that to say, there will still be many legal hoops to jump through, including securing the right kind of travel visas, a doctor’s confirmation of the couple’s inability to conceive, and proving your legal marital status. Because, yes, unfortunately Ukrainian surrogacy is only open to married heterosexual couples.

The neighboring country of Georgia is another relatively popular location for intended parents to seek surrogacy arrangements. Laws and regulations are very similar to those in Ukraine, although in general, the quality of medical care is slightly lower. Surrogacy is also only legal for heterosexual couples here.

Russia allows foreign intended parents with proven infertility to pursue surrogacy, although once again this does not apply to LGBTQ couples or individuals. It’s also not the first choice destination because of some legal complications: Intended parents face some risk because Russian law allows the surrogate to retain some parental rights for the first 30 days. She could change her mind and demand custody of the child, causing all sorts of heartbreak and legal complications.

At this moment, there are limited international destinations for same-sex parents considering surrogacy: The United States, Mexico, Colombia and Canada are the main ones. Which you choose will depend on cost, security and availability of surrogates. In Canada and the UK, where altruistic surrogacy is the only possibility, finding a suitable surrogate can take years.

We’ve already covered the US in depth, so let’s look at Colombia and Canada in more detail.

Colombia

Colombia has an impressively progressive stance on gay rights. As such, it’s one of the most popular options for LGBTQ intended parents to seek surrogacy. Medical standards are high according to the World Health Organization, ranking #22 of 191 countries, ahead of both Canada and the US. The surrogacy cost is low, mostly due to the lower cost of living, and there is a legal framework that protects families who conceive children “through scientific methods.” Those legal protections extend to non-citizens, and Colombian law prohibits discrimination against LGBTQ individuals.

Mexico

Surrogacy in Mexico, as in the United States, is not federally regulated. Instead, each state decides. While surrogacy is banned in some Mexican states, it is legal in others. Americans often engage the help of an agency to arrange for surrogacy births to take place in more surrogacy-friendly parts of the country. Be cautious of unregulated programs, though, and do your due diligence to make sure you’re entering into a legitimate arrangement.

Canada

Altruistic surrogacy is legal in Canada, although the ban on compensation has been loosely enforced in the past. Clinics would provide commercial agency-type services, including surrogate compensation, sidestepping the official laws against paid surrogacy arrangements.

In 2019, the Canadian government passed new regulations requiring surrogates to prove their expenses with a receipt. Otherwise, they would not be eligible for payment. The extra trouble of proving surrogacy-related expenses, coupled with the crackdown on agencies offering compensation more in line with commercial surrogacies, means that Canadian surrogates now have much less incentive to sign up for the lengthy and somewhat risky process.

But still, Canada is a viable option for many couples because of its location and relative ease of obtaining parental rights as intended parents. Children born via surrogacy in Canada also receive a Canadian passport, which can be a draw for some families.

United Kingdom
Surrogacy laws in the UK are very similar to Canadian laws. Altruistic surrogacy is legal in the UK, and intended parents are able and expected to reimburse the surrogate for all related expenses. There are several points that make surrogacy in the UK difficult, however.

For starters, it’s a criminal offense to advertise that you are searching for a surrogate or that you would like to become a surrogate. It’s illegal to pay a surrogate more than a “reasonable” reimbursement for expenses related to the surrogacy. And the surrogate will be named as the birth mother upon delivery of the child, giving her the right to keep the baby. Under current UK law, the mother has no obligation to cooperate and agree to a change in parental status.

As a result of many of these restrictions, there are very few surrogates willing to enter into an altruistic agreement. And many intended parents in the UK are wary of the automatic granting of parental rights to the birth mother, with no pre-birth order of parentage possible. A very reasonable worry to have, in my opinion. As such, the waiting list to find a willing surrogate can be years long, causing most intended parents in the UK to seek surrogacy in other countries.

Surrogacy is iffy in most other parts of the world. In Western Europe, most countries have banned surrogacy altogether. Surrogacy is illegal in Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. Intended parents residing in these countries frequently seek international surrogacy arrangements in Eastern Europe, the United States, or Colombia.

Even when European citizens seek surrogacy in a country where it’s legal, there can be serious complications upon returning home with the child. Just last year, a story hit the news about a French couple finally gaining official recognition of their twins born via surrogacy — nineteen years later!!
The twins were born to a surrogate in California in 2000. France bans surrogacy to “prevent the human body from becoming a commercial instrument” and the act itself is punishable by one year in prison plus a 15,000 euro fine.

Back in 2000, when the couple returned to France with their twins plus a pair of fresh American birth certificates naming both intended parents as the legal parents, the government suspected there had been a surrogacy arrangement and refused to file the certificates as they were. Because the surrogacy took place on foreign soil, the parents were not jailed or fined, but the government also refused to recognize the intended parents properly.

Until 2019 – 19 years later, an appeals court finally ruled in favor of the family, recognizing the parenthood of children born via surrogacy abroad. That’s a long time to wait in limbo!

While stories like this make waves every once in a while, just know that for every legal complication, there are hundreds of successful surrogacy stories that remain unseen. If you do your homework, consult the right professionals, and cross all your t’s, you’ll be on the right track.

Conclusion

The legalities and ethics of gestational surrogacy are far-reaching and weigh heavily on every hopeful parent considering surrogacy. My best advice is to get the right people in your corner. A reputable agency can help guide you toward the best decision for your unique situation, and an attorney specializing in reproductive law will be your greatest asset. Whatever you choose, know that in the end, it will all be worth it.

I hope the information I’ve presented here has helped you make sense of some of the laws behind surrogacy. For more information, check out our resources page at TheFertilityCafe.com.

Thank you so much for joining me today. I’m Eloise Drane, remember “Love has no limits, neither should parenthood.”

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