Worldwide Surrogacy Specialists
Before we dive into the intricacies of the contract phase of your surrogacy journey, congratulations! You’ve made the remarkable decision to become a surrogate and give the gift of life to another family. We’re so proud of you!
Now that you have done your research, signed up with a surrogacy agency, and have been matched with Intended Parents, you will soon begin the contract phase of the surrogacy process. Before you enter this stage of your journey, it’s important to understand exactly what the contract phase and what it entails.
We created this infographic outlining the contract phase of your journey. Check out the process below and continue reading to learn more.
The Gestational Surrogacy Contract (GS Contract) will be your roadmap throughout the entire surrogacy process. It explicitly states the rights that you will have as the surrogate and the rights the Intended Parents will have as you all come together to bring the Intended Parents' child(ren) into the world by way of gestational surrogacy. The GS Contract not only protects all parties involved, but also sets the framework for your payment schedule throughout the surrogacy process.
All surrogacy agencies have different methods/procedures for various aspects of the gestational surrogacy process. Therefore, what one agency does during the contract phase might be very different from another agency's policies and procedures during their contract phase. For example, some surrogate agencies pre-determine your compensation and benefits. In this instance, you will already know what to expect going into the contract phase. In contrast to this, other agencies will allow surrogates to determine their fees and compensation within reasonable limits. However, in this instance, "first-time" or unexperienced gestational surrogates might not know what is considered "reasonable" or within "normal" range for their compensation/fees.
There are pros and cons to both examples mentioned above. Therefore, it is important that you are comfortable with your surrogacy agency and are able to discuss all matters that may arise prior to the contract phase.
Once your compensation is determined, the agency and/or lawyer will draft the initial contract and send to the Intended Parents for their initial review. At this point, the Intended Parents will have the opportunity to discuss the initial draft with their agency and/or lawyer. Once they approve the initial draft, it is sent to your attorney who will then review it with you. Any requested changes, revisions or edits you then make will be sent back to the intended parent's attorney for their review and approval.
Once you and the Intended Parents all agree, (after either accepting some of the changes or requesting further revisions) the contract is usually finalized at this point. Your attorney will then advise you with signing instructions and the contract is then put into final form for execution by all parties. From there, your agency will follow up to make sure the contract is correctly signed and legal clearance is sent to the IVF clinic. Once legal clearance is sent to the IVF clinic, the clinic will set up the medical calendar that will eventually lead up to the embryo transfer.
At this point, you are one step closer to fulfilling your Intended Parents’ dream of becoming parents! Although the contract phase might seem tedious, it is an aspect of the surrogacy process that is extremely important for all those involved. If at any point in the process you have questions, and/or are concerned about something that is included within the contract, ask questions!! It is in your best interest to understand everything in your contract.
With the help of your surrogacy and your attorney, you will be supported and protected both legally and contractually to ensure the best journey possible for you and your Intended Parents.
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