Surrogacy Contracts

Here’s Why Everyone Needs a Gestational Surrogacy Agreement

The relationship between the gestational carrier, her spouse, and the intended parents is crucial, special and complicated. There are medical, emotional, legal and financial aspects of any gestational carrier arrangement that must be discussed and agreed upon to ensure a smooth relationship. Although some of the discussion may be awkward or difficult, it’s important to have experienced guidance in navigating these critical issues.

It is extremely important that there be a written contract between the gestational carrier, her spouse (if she is married), and the intended parents that lays out each party’s rights and responsibilities throughout the pregnancy and after the birth of the child. Most assisted reproduction medical providers will not conduct embryo transfers into a gestational carrier’s uterus without a signed gestational carrier contract in place.

Even if all parties involved in the gestational carrier are familiar with each other, or even in the same family, a contract should still be written and signed. This type of document can help prevent undue stress, confusion or arguments during the pregnancy. A contract also helps all parties involved consider all the different possible outcomes of the assisted reproduction process and potential pregnancy.

A well-drafted gestational surrogacy agreement is approximately 40-50 pages long and goes into considerable detail about every aspect of the pregnancy from pre-embryo transfer to post-birth. Some of the issues covered (but are not limited to) are:

  • Parental rights of intended parents (and lack of parental rights for the carrier and her partner)
  • The way the embryos will be created and the conditions under which they will be implanted
  • The conduct of the carrier during the pregnancy
  • Termination and reduction decisions
  • The location and conditions of delivery
  • Availability of medical history about the carrier (and her spouse, if applicable)
  • Presence of the intended parents at appointments and delivery
  • Medical decision-making authority
  • What will happen in the event of death or divorce
  • Compensation and payment of expenses
  • Future contact/relationship between the parties
  • Confidentiality…. and much more! 

If you need help with drafting, reviewing, or formalizing a gestational carrier contract, contact us today. This is a very special relationship and a very important time. Let us bring a village of experience, compassion, and support to your little one before he or she is even born!