Do you qualify to be a surrogate?

Do you qualify to be a su…
What are the general requirements to be a surrogate? Watch this video and give us a call to discuss your surrogacy journey.

Video Transcript

Speaker: Stephanie Brinkley

Hi everyone, this is Stephanie Brinkley at Brinkley Law Firm and today I'm going to talk to you about what does it take to be a surrogate. Many people think that becoming a surrogate is an easy process, but what they don't realize there are actually professional and ethical standards that may exclude many women from being a candidate. So let's talk about that list today and see if you make the cut first.

First, let's talk about the word surrogacy. There's actually two kinds of surrogacy. One is a traditional surrogate, one is a gestational carrier, and it's important to know the difference between the two. A traditional surrogate is a woman who allows the fertilization of her own egg by the intended father and she carries that child to term for the benefit of the intended parents. Now, because she has a genetic connection to the baby, she has heightened or increased legal rights as compared to a gestational carrier. For that reason, the end result is actually an adoption.

For this reason, traditional surrogacy is scarcely used. You typically find it in a family relationship, sister for sister, cousin for cousin. The more popular and more common form of surrogacy is actually the use of a gestational carrier. A gestational carrier is a woman who has no genetic connection to the child. DNA of the baby completely belongs to the intended parents or at least one intended parent and possibly a donor.

Now, talk about the qualifying criteria for a gestational carrier. Gestational carriers are held to certain standards when they're being evaluated as a possible candidate for a match. These standards are applied by agencies as well as fertility clinics.

First, the carrier has to be between the ages of 21 and 43. Second, she must have already carried a child to term and had an uncomplicated right pregnancy. Three, no more than three C-section deliveries. Four, have a body mass index of 32 or below. And five, be financially stable. We don't want to take advantage of someone who may temporarily be on government assistance.

Finally, here's some tips to get you started. If you want to be a gestational carrier and a blessing to another family, here are the top three things that you can do now to move forward in your journey. First, get a letter of medical clearance from your OB. Your OB knows your personal medical history and without divulging your medical records can vouch for your physical ability to carry and deliver a child.

Second, determine if you have surrogate friendly insurance. If you don't, you'll need to have a private policy purchased for the journey and that's okay, but that's an important piece of information that the potential parents will want to know on the front end. And finally, draft a bio about yourself. Talk about your family. Talk about your support system, your children, your daily habits, your health habits. Share a little bit about yourself. Give the future parents a little glimpse into your health and lifestyle choices, and it's so important for them to know that you have a great support system who is going to encourage you through this surrogacy journey, because it is a big undertaking and everybody's in it together.

If you'd like more information about becoming a gestational carrier, please contact our office. We want to make sure that you have a plan, you have the confidence to move forward and match independently if you so choose. You can call us at 843-277-9009, or you can go online to our website, and schedule a consultation.