Do I Have a Right to an Attorney Throughout the Surrogacy Journey?

Cherri Bio-1-close upExpanding your family via surrogacy is an amazing journey. As parents, you are entrusting the first nine months of growth and development of your precious child to someone else. In addition to protecting your legal rights, an attorney experienced in surrogate legal services can also provide you with the necessary guidance.

FINDING YOUR SURROGATE

There are two different ways to find your surrogate, and your attorney should explain each process and guide you through whichever one you choose. You can go through an agency who will match you with a pre-screened surrogate so that you can avoid that process. You will, however, still need an attorney to handle all the legalities.

Your second option is to find a surrogate without hiring both an agency and an attorney. You may already have a surrogate in mind or you may decide to hire an attorney who can help you find one. If you think you might be more comfortable with this option, be sure to hire an attorney who has experience in helping prospective parents search on their own. This gives you more continuity of service, as your attorney will represent you throughout your entire journey.

GETTING TO KNOW YOUR SURROGATE

Your relationship with your surrogate is second only to your relationship with your future child. It is important for you, as intended parents, to not only get to know her, but to bond with her. Building a relationship with your surrogate is a rewarding part of the process.

You will no doubt be excited the first time you meet a prospective match, but it's important to take a deep breath and really begin to get to know her. Here are some questions to get you started:

  • What is most important to you during this journey?
  • How did you become interested in surrogacy?
  • Is your family supportive of your decision?
  • What types of activities/hobbies are you interested in?

As you let the conversation proceed naturally, she will, no doubt, have questions for you, as well. Answer them as openly and honestly as possible. Remember, there are no right or wrong answers. You are looking for someone you can bond with and build a relationship with.

GO BEYOND YOUR GUT

Most women who are interested in surrogacy pursue it for the right reasons. You cannot, however, be too careful, so please be aware of these red flags:

  • Focusing solely on the money
  • Questioning the necessity of a legal contract
  • A lack of support from loved ones
  • Not showing an interest in building a relationship with you

Anything that makes you uncomfortable should be cleared up before you make a commitment.

THE SURROGACY CONTRACT

This contract is structured to protect both intended parents and surrogates in addition to outlining all parties’ rights and responsibilities. Your attorney will write the initial contract, with the understanding that it will be sent to your surrogate's attorney for their review. Negotiations do not end until all parties are completely satisfied.

Don't be afraid to take your time with this. It is, after all, one of the most important decisions of your life, perhaps the most important, because your child is involved. An experienced surrogacy attorney knows what to look for and will help you consider every possible outcome.

Choosing and bonding with your surrogate takes time, sacrifice, and trust. Take all the time you need. And, remember, Attorney Jennifer Fairfax is ready to walk with you, every step of the way.

 

“I believe in working with each of my clients—in support of their family dynamic—to make the dreams of parenthood a reality. Whether you are single or married; or gay; a step-parent, a surrogate or intended parent or a child of adoption, it is my mission to serve as your advocate. With a dedication to the ethical and sensitive nature of each situation, I will help you understand the laws within Maryland or Washington, DC for adoption or surrogacy, and pledge to be your partner throughout the journey.” - Jennifer Fairfax