Surrogacy Frequently Asked Questions
What is Surrogacy?
Surrogacy is an agreement between a woman (surrogate) and couple or individual (intended parents) in which the surrogate chooses to become pregnant through an embryo transfer (IVF) and carry the resulting pregnancy for the intended parents.
It is recommended that professionals be involved to guide both parties through the medical, legal, and emotional processes of surrogacy.
What is Gestational Surrogacy?
Gestational Surrogacy – the family planning option that allows intended parents to have a child who shares a genetic connection to them, and surrogates to help intended parents have a family they couldn’t otherwise have.
Gestational Surrogacy vs. Traditional Surrogacy
- Gestational Surrogacy – See GESTATIONAL SURROGACY definition above
- Traditional Surrogacy – the family planning option where a surrogate combines her egg with an intended father’s sperm. This establishes the surrogate as the child’s biological mother. Because this, in turn, creates emotional and legal issues, traditional surrogacy has been banned across the US and is no longer recognized as a form of surrogacy.
Altruistic Surrogacy vs. Compensated Surrogacy
- Altruistic Surrogacy – refers to those gestational surrogates who carry for intended parents without any monetary compensation. Oftentimes, the surrogate that is found in an altruistic surrogacy is close to the intended parents they carry for (family member, close friend, etc.)
- Compensated Surrogacy – also known as “commercial surrogacy,” is generally applied to a surrogate who receives compensation for her services, to some degree, further than medical expenses that occur throughout the pregnancy.
Independent Surrogacy vs. Agency-Assisted Surrogacy
- Independent Surrogacy – is when the intended parents find a surrogate and go through the process of surrogacy without the help of a surrogacy agency.
- Agency-Assisted – is when the intended parents find a surrogate and go through the process of surrogacy with the help of a surrogacy agency.
Is surrogacy legal in Oklahoma?
Surrogacy is legal in Oklahoma and the intended parents are permitted to compensate the surrogate for her time and expenses.
Surrogacy is expressly permitted by the new Oklahoma surrogacy legislation enacted in 2019. Pursuant to the new laws, Oklahoma now has standardized processes, procedures and protections in place for those who wish to engage in a surrogacy arrangement.
The Oklahoma Gestational Carrier Act legalized gestational surrogacy and established the framework for such contracts’ enforceability and the conditions in which pre-birth parentage orders are to be granted.
Who is a Surrogate?
Surrogate/Surrogate Mother – the woman who carries the baby of the intended parents. Other names she is known by are: gestational surrogate and gestational carrier.
Surrogate | Gestational Carrier | Gestational Surrogate
Surrogate or Surrogate Mother – the woman who carries the baby of the intended parents. Other names she is known by are: gestational surrogate and gestational carrier – these terms are often used interchangeably.
A gestational carrier is different from a traditional surrogate. A traditional surrogate is the child’s biological mother, but a gestational surrogate has no relation to the child.
How does the surrogate become pregnant?
The surrogate becomes pregnant through the IVF Process – the process in which the surrogate is inseminated with the intended parents’ lab-fertilized embryo, and becomes pregnant with their child.
What is an Egg Donor?
If the intended mother can’t provide her own eggs for the IVF, she can use a donor’s eggs. An intended mother may decide to use donated eggs if her own eggs are unhealthy. Gay or single men may also use egg donors, since they can’t provide the eggs themselves.
The egg donor and the surrogate mother are two separate people. The surrogate can’t provide her own eggs, so the intended parents would have to acquire the eggs from elsewhere.
Sperm banks and sperm donors are also available for intended parents who can’t provide sperm for the IVF.
What is an Egg Retrieval?
It’s easy to collect sperm for the IVF, but it takes time to collect the eggs. The intended mother or egg donor will have to undergo surgery to retrieve said eggs.
What is Embryo Transfer?
Following IVF, the embryos are placed inside the surrogate mother in the hopes that at least one will stick. After the transfer is complete, the surrogate will be monitored. Once it is confirmed that she is pregnant, she’ll have to see an obstetrician regularly.
How much are surrogates paid?
Each surrogacy journey is unique and involves many factors that can impact the overall compensation. The average amount of compensation, including expenses, can range from $50,000 to $80,000 depending on experience and the individual arrangements.
What are the requirements to be a surrogate?
Surrogates must live in the U.S. and be U.S. citizens, be between ages 21 and 39, not use drugs, have had one successful pregnancy, and more. Please find all of Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Oklahoma surrogate requirements here.
Who are Intended Parents?
Intended Parent – the couple or individual seeking to create a family through gestational surrogacy. Intended parents can be: single, married, heterosexual, LGBT, transracial, etc. The intended parents are the child’s (or children’s) biological parents. They are the people the surrogate mother is working for.
What is Surrogacy Matching?
Surrogacy agencies, like Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Oklahoma, interview both the surrogate and the intended parents before introducing them to each other. They match surrogates with intended parents based on their desires and preferences. For example, if a surrogate mother is passionate about helping members of the LGBT community, she may be paired with an LGBT couple or individual.
What are the requirements to be intended parents?
Intended parents must complete a background check, have the financial means to support a surrogacy journey, have a clean criminal history, and more. Please visit here for a full list of requirements with Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Oklahoma.