The Surrogacy Process

As a potential surrogate, it’s important for you to understand exactly what you’re signing up for when you apply for surrogacy. While you are helping another couple achieve their dreams of expanding their family, you are committing a lot of your time and effort to make it happen. At Family Creations, we want to keep you informed of the entire surrogacy process. If you’re ready to learn more, read on for a breakdown of the estimated surrogacy timeline.

Step 1: Do Your Research | 1-6 Months

young surrogate candidate

Becoming a surrogate is not for everyone. It takes a lot of time and you must meet certain requirements to be approved. Before you even apply to be a surrogate, you want to make sure you meet those requirements, including:

  • Having already given birth to at least one child
  • Experienced a healthy pregnancy and delivery
  • Be between the ages of 21 and 39
  • Be a healthy non-smoker with no history of drug use
  • Be completely financially stable 

You can learn more about the physical and mental requirements of the surrogacy process here.

Step 2: Decide on a Surrogacy Agency | 1-6 Months

While some surrogates know a couple they want to help and decide to approach surrogacy independently, others want the assistance and safety provided by a surrogacy agency like Family Creations. From contacts with local doctors to taking care of the legal and financial paperwork, there are a number of benefits to working with a surrogacy agency,  We can help you navigate the entire surrogacy process step by step.

Choosing an agency with experience and positive testimonials is crucial to ensure you’re working with professionals. 

Step 3: Applying | 2 Weeks – 2 Months

If you decide to proceed with an agency, from the moment you submit an application until you’re approved, the surrogacy timeline can take anywhere from two weeks to two months. You’ll need complete interviews, background checks and provide us with detailed information regarding your social and medical history.  You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions about the surrogacy process and how our agency specifically takes care of your needs.

Much of the application and approval process depends on your schedule and how quickly you can complete our screening information. 

Step 4: Matching with Parents | Open Ended

While the demand for surrogates is high — especially in California, Texas, Washington, and Georgia — we cannot guarantee a time frame in which intended parents will choose you. This depends on your surrogacy requirements as well as your personal profile.  Our typical match time is 2-3 weeks. Many intended parents choose surrogates based on shared beliefs, so spending quality time our your surrogate profile can be key in how quickly you are matched.  

At Family Creations, the average wait time for a surrogate to match with intended parents is about 2-3 weeks. 

Step 5: Legal Contracts | 2-6 Weeks

At Family Creations, the creation of a legal document establishing all the rights of the surrogate and intended parents is essential, as it protects all parties involved in the surrogacy process. You will have your own legal advisor to help you sort through the more difficult decisions and ensure you understand all of your rights. This is also the point where we finalize the fees and payment structure you can expect.

Step 6: Medications & Monitoring | 4 Weeks

The surrogacy process  involves an embryo transfer that requires a number of fertility appointments and medications. You will be working with a fertility doctor who will monitor your progress — sometimes daily.  

In cases where a fresh embryo is used, you and the egg donor or Intended Parent must be in sync, so timing can fluctuate and constant monitoring is necessary. The actual embryo transfer takes about 10 minutes, but it will take two weeks to confirm whether it was successful.

Step 7: Ultrasound | 4-6 Weeks After Transfer

Once you are confirmed to be pregnant, we will schedule an ultrasound within 4 to 6 weeks. 

Step 8: Release from Monitoring | 8-10 Weeks After Transfer

After the ultrasound confirms a healthy baby, the next step of the surrogacy process releases you from regular monitoring and allows you to go back to a traditional OB/GYN, where you will be seen for routine maternity care appointments. 

Step 9: Pregnancy | 30 Weeks After Release to OB

You’re already familiar with your own pregnancy, so your surrogate pregnancy is pretty much the same. Regular appointments with your OB/GYN and meetings with the intended parents will keep you busy. Some intended parents want as much contact as possible, while others just want occasional updates. Your relationship with them should be discussed during the matching phase of the surrogacy process.

Step 10: Delivery | 9 Months After Confirmed Pregnancy

The biggest difference between delivering your own child and delivering as a surrogate is the involvement of the intended parents. Like the amount of contact you have with them throughout the pregnancy, you should discuss whether their presence in the delivery room is appropriate well in advance of this date. You have plenty of opportunities along the surrogacy timeline to hammer out the details.

Directly after birth, most babies are immediately handed over to the intended parents for skin to skin bonding. They often request a private room during this time. Your initial contract will determine how much contact you have with the parents and baby post-delivery. 

Your relationship with the intended parents could dictate minimal contact or you can forever be forever friends post delivery.

Surrogacy Timeline From Start to Finish

From the moment you start thinking about applying as a surrogate to the minute you say your last goodbyes to the intended parents, you could be spending two years in the surrogacy process. This is much longer than just a traditional pregnancy and there are a lot of extenuating circumstances that may lengthen this time period. 

For any questions about this timeline or additional details about the surrogacy process, reach

by Julia McConnell on December 12, 2019