Where is surrogacy legal?
Choosing surrogacy as the option to expand your family can be a liberating and relief-filled decision. Many intended parents only reach our doorstep after years of exhaustive IVF attempts and medical interventions. Doing your due diligence and researching ahead of time is important in determining the best agency for your needs, as well as the best location for your surrogacy journey to unfold.
What is surrogacy?
Surrogacy is a practice involving assisted reproduction techniques (ART) or in-vitro fertilization (IVF), to create genetically linked embryos and incorporating the help of a gestational carrier to carry a baby to term. Over the course of the pregnancy, the surrogate carrier and intended parents forge a mutually beneficial relationship where both share the joy of giving and receiving the gift of parenthood.
Surrogacy is a long-term process that involves both medical and legal experts, as well as a strong support system of experienced professionals to guide intended parents and gestational carriers through the ups and downs of the journey. Agency backing is recommended, as this ensures a secure and ethical framework for your surrogacy planning.
What are common destinations for surrogacy?
While surrogacy is a rewarding experience, allowing thousands of couples and singles of all statuses to create a family of their own, it’s a relatively new medical practice and still a little controversial for some. For this reason, surrogacy is only legally straightforward in certain countries and surrogacy laws can differ not only country to country but also by state and territory. Of the countries which permit surrogacy, many also have residency or citizenship requirements for intended parent(s) and/or surrogate carriers.
Popular countries where surrogacy is supported by a legal framework or not prohibited by law include:
• US (some states)
• Canada (some provinces) • Cyprus
Intended parents choose their preferred destination based on individual preferences such as: affordability, distance, familiarity, fertility expertise, speed and legal structure.
Be Parent has branch locations in Georgia, Cyprus, Argentina and Mexico as these countries are identified as having the most flexible IVF and surrogacy laws, as well as highly reputable fertility practices.
What kinds of complications can occur?
In the majority of cases, a surrogacy journey is a smooth process for all parties involved. However, surrogacy has been discredited by cases where intended
parents or the surrogate carriers have been unethically treated – giving rise to serious concerns.
The overriding complication intended parents have had to face has been in assuming their parental rights; this struggle can involve lengthy court battles and be emotionally and financially depleting. In certain countries, a surrogate carrier is fully supported by legislation if she changes her mind and decides to assume a parental role. This is particularly common in connection to traditional surrogacy arrangements. For this reason, carefully selecting the destination for your surrogacy journey and having the support of an ethical agency is of vital importance.
Are surrogate carriers at risk?
It is a common misconception that a surrogate carrier’s involvement in a surrogacy arrangement puts her legally at risk. As long as all parties have agreed on the terms and course of the journey, and there is qualified legal support in structuring the partnership, the surrogate carrier is protected and not in a legally vulnerable position.
Until surrogacy is legally recognized worldwide, there are somewhat limited options for safe and reliable third-party reproduction. While deciding on where to begin your journey, you should first familiarize yourself with surrogacy legislation and consult with a qualified solicitor proficient in family and surrogacy law.
For more information on the surrogacy-specific advantages of Georgia, Cyprus, Mexico and Argentina, please consult with our Be Parent team. Our legal division and expert advisors are trained to provide the most up-to-date guidance so you can confidently select the most secure and viable destination for your needs.