How Does Surrogacy Work?

How Does Surrogacy Work?


The Surrogacy Process Step by Step

Did you know that by considering surrogacy and clicking this article, you’ve already begun the surrogacy process?

That’s because the surrogacy process’ initial step, and perhaps its most important, is deciding whether surrogacy is truly right for you and your family. There are a lot of things to consider when it comes to this decision, so it’s important that you do as much research as possible and have the best understanding of what surrogacy means for you and your family before moving forward. If you’re wondering, “How does surrogacy work?” our website is a great place to start.

In addition, our surrogacy specialists are always available to help you make this decision and to teach you more about how surrogacy works. To begin this discussion with no obligation, click the following to request free surrogacy information and speak with a surrogacy specialist.

To help you better understand what to expect from this parenthood journey and how our surrogacy services are tailored to that, we’ve explained the surrogacy process step by step below:

1. Getting Started with American Surrogacy

Your surrogacy specialist will be your point of contact and will oversee the entire gestational surrogacy process from your initial phone call to well after the surrogacy process is completed. She will be available to answer any questions you have along the way, offer support and advice and make sure that your surrogacy journey is proceeding as smoothly as possible.

After an initial conversation, she will first send you our Surrogacy Planning Questionnaire (SPQ), which will allow us to get to know you and your goals for surrogacy better.

The SPQ will ask you a variety of questions that are important for how we will tailor the process of surrogacy to your situation, including:

  • Do you have any past experiences with surrogacy or adoption?
  • Do you require an egg or a sperm donor?
  • What is your budget for surrogacy?
  • What type of contact arrangement with the surrogate do you want during the surrogacy?
  • What type of contact arrangement with the surrogate do you want after the surrogacy?
  • And many more

Your answers will help us find the right surrogate for your family and prepare for the upcoming steps of your surrogacy process.

2. Completing the Screening Process

Screening is an essential step to our surrogacy method, promising both our intended parents and surrogates that we have taken every measure possible to ensure the other party is physically, psychologically and legally ready for the process of surrogacy before being presented for a match.

For intended parents, our screening process includes two steps: the home assessment and background clearances.

Home Assessment if Needed* – A social worker’s overview of your lives, consisting of:

  • In-Home Inspection – Your social worker will visit you to further assess your family and home.
  • Interviews – During the in-home visit, your social worker will sit down with you, your spouse and anyone else living in the home to learn more about each individual and their thoughts on the upcoming surrogacy.

*The home assessment may be required as determined on a case-by-case basis. 

Background Clearances – For you, your significant other, and people over 12 years old and living in your home.

While you will have to complete screening as part of our surrogacy process, so do our surrogates. This way, we can make sure that before we even match, both parties are ready to pursue the gestational surrogacy process and all of the commitments required — to prevent any delays in your surrogacy process once you begin.

3. Finding a Surrogate

Your surrogacy specialist and our media team will work with you to create an Intended Parent Profile to help you find the right surrogate for your family. Your profile will include pictures and information about your family and your home, as well as a letter to any prospective surrogate reading your profile. Then, based on your preferences and goals, your surrogacy specialist will help identify possible surrogate candidates and show them your profile.

If you and a surrogate reciprocate interest in one another, your surrogacy specialist will set up a conference call or meeting for you to get to know one another and discuss each of your surrogacy goals in more detail. Your specialist will help you prepare for this, as well.

After this conversation, if both parties are ready to move forward with our surrogacy procedure, an official match will be made, paperwork will be signed, and we will move toward the drafting of legal contracts.

4. Beginning the Legal Process

Both you and your surrogate will have your own attorney who specializes in assisted reproductive technologies and each state’s laws. He or she will meet with you individually to review the language and compensation you’ve each agreed upon and to ensure you understand your rights and any possible risks. The legal process is a crucial part of how surrogacy works; without a solid legal contract outlining responsibilities and expectations, the process of surrogacy can be very complicated and even dangerous for intended parents.

Once the contracts are signed, things start getting really exciting, as we will begin preparing for the in vitro fertilization stage of the surrogacy process!

5. Complete Embryo Transfer

American Surrogacy partners with fertility clinics across the country, and we will work with both parties to determine which one to use based on location, preferences and more. We can always help you find a fertility clinic that’s current with the best surrogacy technology to make this medical process of surrogacy go as smoothly as possible.

But exactly how does gestational surrogacy work with American Surrogacy?

In gestational surrogacy, a surrogate is not related to the child that she carries. Instead, a previously created embryo will be transferred into her uterus.

If an egg or sperm donor is required, the fertility clinic will handle much of this surrogacy process while we oversee it. If the intended mother’s eggs will be used to produce an embryo, she will be administered a course of drugs to stimulate the production of multiple eggs. On the other hand, many of our intended parents have remaining embryos from previous IVF cycles. Usually, these can also be used for the embryo transfer process.

Once all conditions have been satisfied, the embryo will be transferred to your surrogate. A few months later, once a healthy pregnancy is confirmed, base compensation of monthly payments will begin.

Supporting the surrogate is a very important part of the overall surrogacy process, especially at this stage. Her surrogacy specialist will be available for her during every step of the pregnancy, and we educate and encourage intended parents to be there for her as well in any way they can.

6. Finalizing the Legal Process

After the first trimester, your attorney will begin working on the pre-birth order, which will:

  • establish you as the legal parents of your child.
  • allow you to make medical decisions for your child.
  • resolve any insurance conflicts.
  • direct the hospital and the state’s vital records department to include your names on the birth certificate.

Clearly, securing a pre-birth order will give you peace of mind that the child is absolutely, and most importantly, legally yours. Whether you can complete a pre-birth order or another kind of parentage order will depend on your state surrogacy laws, but your surrogacy specialist and lawyer will have discussed this with you during the contract stage of the surrogacy process.

7. Bringing Home Your Baby

The hospital stay is obviously a very exciting time for everyone, as everyone’s hard work and dedication will soon result in a beautiful newborn!

The events of the hospital stay and the surrogacy birth will likely have been determined by now. We will have already prepared the hospital for the surrogacy, whether you will witness the birth in the delivery room, how much the surrogate wants to be involved in the post-birth celebration, and much more.

Once the surrogate is ready to be dismissed, you will all leave the hospital together, forever connected.

Finally, as we said at the beginning, our staff isn’t finished yet. Any help you need over the next few days, weeks or years, we will be there for you in any way we can. If you’re wondering how to have a baby through surrogacy, please contact us today to learn more about how surrogacy works.